Rising demand for electric cars sparks call for more village charging points
PARKING facilities created in a cluster of Solihull villages need to cater for electric cars, a group of residents has said.
The draft version of the Knowle, Dorridge & Bentley Heath Neighbourhood Plan – put together by local people – suggests that at least 20 per cent of new off- street spaces in village centres are equipped with charging points.
It follows figures earlier this year which claimed that Solihull has one of the highest numbers of electric cars anywhere in the country.
It is estimated that there are more than 1,300 of the vehicles in the local authority area – the ninth highest figure nationwide.
The Neighbourhood Plan also emphasises the importance of ensuring that car parking sites in the locality are fitted with charging facilities.
“Looking to the future, and in line with the Government’s policy of encouraging electric vehicles, this policy applies to all car parks likely to be used by members of the public,” said the document.
The Plan – currently out for public consultation - is designed to guide development up until 2033, with the assumption that the number of electric vehicles on the road will increase dramatically over the course of the next 15 years.
Indeed, it is estimated that the number in the UK will hit one million by 2020, and there are concerns that the country does not have the infrastructure to cope with the surge in demand.
At present there are 16,500 charging points, but a study published by data firm Emu Analytics earlier this month suggested that the number needed to increase six- fold in order to cope with the move away from diesel vehicles. Richard Vilton, chief executive of Emu Analytics, said: “Ultimately the UK, by investing in the right way early, has the opportunity to be a global leader in electric vehicles, which will benefit businesses, towns, cities and communities by preparing for a sustainable future.”