he first of 13 rapid electric vehicle charging points will be available this month in the Wakefield district. The remainder will be installed over the next few months.
The first green rapid charging point, powered by 100% renewable energy, will be available at West Street car park in Normanton. The next rapid charging point will be available at High Street car park in Horbury. The rapid chargepoints typically take under an hour to provide a full vehicle charge depending on your vehicle, with the benefit of electricity provided free of charge until 29 October 2021.
The initiative is in partnership with West Yorkshire Combined Authority and ENGIE to provide a network of rapid chargepoints across the region – about 88 charge points across West Yorkshire. It is hoped this will help stimulate the interest and increased use of electric vehicles in the district.
Cllr Denise Jeffery, Wakefield Council’s Cabinet Member for Economic Growth and Regeneration, said: “We want residents in Wakefield to consider switching to electric vehicles and one of the best ways to do this is to make it convenient and free for people to access chargepoints.
“As a Council we have committed to becoming a carbon neutral organisation by 2030 and it is important that we also encourage our residents to reduce their carbon footprint.
“The electricity comes from 100% renewable sources so is great for the environment and just one of the many schemes we are looking at to help tackle climate change.”
Cllr Kim Groves, Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority Transport Committee, said:”I am pleased to see the roll out of what will be a network of 88 rapid chargepoints across West Yorkshire continuing here in Wakefield today.
“Each site has two bays, one of which is exclusively for taxis and private hire vehicles and it is forecast that around 500 diesel taxis and private hire cars will convert to hybrid and pure electric vehicles as a result of this programme.
“Alongside our work to improve public transport and develop infrastructure schemes to reduce congestion, this £3million-plus scheme with our district partners and ENGIE will contribute to our commitment to combatting climate change.”
Alex Bamberg, Managing Director EV Solutions at ENGIE UK and Ireland, said: “We are delighted to be launching the next phase of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority electric vehicle charging network in the Wakefield district. These new chargepoints will play a key role in encouraging uptake in electric vehicles and tackling air pollution to create a greener, cleaner place for people to live and work. They will also support the Council’s 2030 carbon-neutral ambitions.
“Providing green mobility solutions is just one part of a wider strategy where we support local authorities and the public by helping shape their environment as we move towards a net-zero carbon world. We are looking forward to seeing Wakefield residents benefit from this fantastic scheme.”
The £3million programme is the result of a successful bid for £1.98million funding from the Government’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV). The Combined Authority and the partnering local authorities are also providing a further £1.2million of match funding for the scheme. Leeds-based ENGIE was appointed to install, own and operate the new charging points, which will result in West Yorkshire having 88 of around 500 rapid vehicle charging points across the country.
Each chargepoint will have two parking bays for electric vehicles, with one bay dedicated for taxi use (hackney and private hire) in order to encourage a growth in the number of electric vehicles in this sector.