Highways England has awarded £2.8 million for more than 50 new electric vehicle charge points to be built along the country’s main routes, with contracts awarded to BP Chargemaster and Swarco.
The funding is part of Highways England’s plans to ensure that 95% of England’s motorways and A-roads are within 20 miles of a charge point.
More than 50 new charge points will be installed under the scheme within the next nine months. Details of those units are lacking, though it would be safe to assume – given the nature of the roads along which they are being installed – that they will be rapid chargers at the very least.
Funding sees BP Chargemaster carry out work in the north of the country, and Swarco covering the south. Installation, commissioning of facilities, plus ongoing operation and maintenance for a seven-year period form the core structure of the contracts.
Highways England’s Mark Collins, Environmental Designated Fund (Carbon) Portfolio Manager and Project Lead, said: “To help improve air quality and reduce carbon emissions we’re introducing more electric charging points, at locations near to the network, for example at nearby town centres. This shows that we are looking ahead to meet the future demand for this facility.
“This contract is about supporting drivers of electric vehicles using our network. It will give them additional charging facilities just off England’s motorways and major A roads to help them make longer journeys and reduce the anxiety of potentially running out of power. We look forward to the benefits this will provide drivers on our roads.”
David Martell, Chief Executive of BP Chargemaster, said: “Access to convenient, fast and reliable charging points across the UK will help enable the mass adoption of electric vehicles. We have been focused on creating such infrastructure over the past 10 years and are very proud to be working with Highways England to expand the provision of rapid charging points so that an even greater number of drivers can make the switch to electric.”
Justin Meyer, General Manager at SWARCO eVolt, added: “We are delighted to have been selected by Highways England for this project to expand the national network of electric vehicle charging infrastructure, it is testament to the range and reliability of our systems and our strong support network across the UK.”
The new funding is in addition to Highways England’s existing plans, working with local authorities to add EV charge points between 2015 and 2021.