Columbus’ first two fast-charge stations were unveiled Tuesday morning along Fulton Street west of South 4th Street Downtown.

Charging stations for electric vehicles have for years been scattered about Columbus in private and public settings, requiring at least two hours for motorists to "fill up."

But until now, there have been none along a public street that can fully recharge an electric car in about the time it takes to run a quick errand.

Columbus’ first two fast-charge stations were unveiled Tuesday morning along Fulton Street west of South 4th Street, Downtown.

The stations, whose bright lights and artwork were designed by students at Columbus College of Art & Design, look like conventional gas pumps. Each can simultaneously charge two vehicles in about 30 minutes. A typical charge, paid by credit card, could cost $10 to $15 depending on energy demand and time of day.

The pilot project is funded in part by a $10 million grant from the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation and awarded through Columbus’ Smart City Challenge. The first two stations cost about $80,000 to build.

Matt Stephens-Rich owns a 2015 Nissan Leaf and charges it at his Hilliard home after work every couple of days.

Being able to stop along a street is a big bonus, he said.

"It adds more convenience in where we can plug in and then go out with friends and come back fully charged," he said.

The goal is to have 1,000 of the chargers in Columbus by March, making it the fastest-growing electric vehicle market in the Midwest, said Mandy Bishop, project manager for Smart Columbus. Most of the fast chargers will be near business sites and apartment complexes. The future curbside model will expand with more funding.

"It’s one small step toward electrifying the transportation system," Bishop said. "It sets us up closer to the gas station model."

Concerns about the nation’s power grid being able to handle the growing demand of electric vehicles have been addressed by the new stations, which spread out the charging times, officials have said.

The visibility of the pumps attracts drivers who otherwise might not know they are there to stop for a quick recharge. Having easy access to Interstate 70 helps cross-country motorists. About 80% of charging currently happens at either the workplace or at home, said Michael Mazur, chief operation officer of Greenspot, the New Jersey company that operates the pumps.

"Columbus continues to prove itself as a leading city ... paving the way for cleaner, more efficient transportation options," Mazur said.

Bishop said the growing market could also inspire interest in electric vehicles and environmentalism.

"Every single person who breathes air should wake up and say this is an amazing thing that you’re doing," Bishop said. "Every single person concerned about climate change should also be excited that we’re doing this."