Engenie has received planning permission from Cardiff Council for the first 4 of 12 new rapid electric vehicle (EV) charge points. Once complete, the deal will more than double the number of rapid chargers in the city centre.
Recent work by Public Health Wales estimates that the equivalent of over 225 deaths each year – or 5% of all deaths – can be attributed to particulate matter and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) in the Cardiff and Vale Health Board area, with thousands more suffering from long-term illnesses.
Over 90,000 commuters travel in and out of Cardiff each day and spend an average of four working days a year stuck in traffic during peak periods. The development of the Engenie EV network could have a significant impact on air pollution and remove up to two tonnes of harmful NO2 from the city centre.
The chargepoints will be powered by 100% renewable energy and are expected to be installed by the end of the year at strategic locations across the busy city centre. The first sites to receive planning permission are located on Bute Crescent and Howard Place.
Each rapid charging point is simple to use, requires no membership or connection fee and operates with standard contactless payment cards. The chargers are compatible with every EV on the market today and provide an 80% charge in just 30-60 minutes.
Patrick Sherriff, Business Development Director, Engenie, says: “Our national network of rapid chargers is greatly improving air quality across the UK. Cardiff Council is embracing the EV revolution and putting drivers at its heart by installing some of the most user-friendly rapid charging points available today.”
Developing electric car infrastructure is a key focus of Cardiff Council’s recent Green Paper on transport and clean air in October. ‘Changing how we move around a growing city’ proposes a rangeof changes to improve the city and start a conversation with the people of Cardiff to shape the future direction of the city.
The Clean Air Strategy will adopt “smart city” approaches, beginning with new technology – such as Engenie’s chargers – and predictive software to support intelligent infrastructure management networks across the city to tackle air pollution.
Sherriff continues: “Cardiff Council’s ‘smart city’ approach to clean air policy demonstrates that, in the fight against harmful air pollution, the ‘carrot’ of new infrastructure and clean technology can be just as effective as the ‘stick’ of low emission zone charges.”
Engenie will cover all costs associated with installing and servicing the rapid charging points. It will also share profits with the council, allowing the city to hit climate targets, generate revenue and support its sustainable growth plan.
Michael Michael, Cabinet Member for Clean Streets, Recycling and Environment, Cardiff Council, says: “By welcoming private investment into the city from forward-thinking businesses like Engenie – which installs, manages and maintains rapid charging points at no cost to the Council – we’re leading the charge when it comes to rolling out EV infrastructure, while generating additional revenue streams to invest back into vital services.”
By modelling major road links in the city centre, the Council has also been able to predict when and where legal air quality limits will be breached if business as usual is continued. The partnership with Engenie will contribute to keeping these areas within recommended limits.
The council will monitor the 12 chargers closely over the next 3-6 months, with the potential for the scheme to be extended to more city locations with the support of local distribution network operator (DNO), Western Power Distribution (WPD).
The announcement follows a string of high profile partnerships announced by Engenie over the past 12 months and represents a major milestone in the company’s plan to grow its network to 1500 rapid chargers by 2021, following significant investment from Investec in April 2018.
The consultation on Cardiff Council’s Green Paper closes on 1st July and the Council is looking for resident responses on a range of proposals, including decarbonising the bus fleet, developing active travel zones, increasing cycle networks and introducing clean air zones.