Electric motoring boost for Wandsworth with plans for over 100 new charging points

Published: 23 September 2016

The council is set to approve up to 125 new electric vehicle charging points across Wandsworth to help fuel the growth in clean and green motoring.

Currently there are only a handful of public charging points in the borough, which could be limiting the number of people switching over to zero emission electric cars. 

The new charging points would be part of the Source London network which allows members to refuel their vehicles at hundreds of locations around the city.

The expansion plan comes amid increasing demand from residents to embrace electric vehicles. Currently there are 414 electric vehicle users within the borough, up from 97 registered in 2013.

Source London has also recorded a 28 per cent increase in Wandsworth members between April and December last year, and has had a further 63 membership requests in 2016 as demand continues to rise.

The proposal, backed this week by the council’s community services committee, recommends installing 20 to 25 ‘charging stations’ across Wandsworth, each of which would include 4 to 5 charging points.

Highly visible locations have been proposed to help raise awareness and encourage a higher take up. They are spread right across the borough, with many bays provided in areas with no parking restrictions or in place of single yellow lines to minimise the parking impacts.

If given final approval by the council’s cabinet, the installation programme is expected to take around 6 months and would be funded by Source London’s parent company Blue Point, with zero cost to the taxpayer.

Environment spokesman Councillor Jonathan Cook said: “Supporting the fledgling electric car industry is a key priority for this council. These zero or low emission vehicles have the potential to dramatically reduce local air pollution but we have to provide the vital charging infrastructure first if that is going to happen.

“This proposal would vastly expand our existing charging network and enable many more drivers to make the switch to electric power cars."

The council’s air quality action plan commits the authority to installing at least 45 electric vehicle charging points in the borough by April 2019, however this proposal would see the council exceeding that target.

The authority has already seen success with air pollution reduction; achieving an 80 per cent fall in nitrogen dioxide pollution episodes on Putney High Street earlier this year.

Wandsworth also has the highest increase in cycling in the whole of England last year, with double the average proportion of regular cyclists.

Other steps the council is taking to tackle air pollution include:

  • The installation of new air quality monitoring stations (such as the ones in Putney) in Tooting, and Clapham Junction to further assess air quality in these areas.
  • A ban on day-time deliveries on Putney High Street.
  • A rolling programme of environmental theatre productions in local schools to teach children how their travel choices affect air quality.
  • Helping schools develop ‘school travel plans’ which reduce the number of cars used on the school run through initiatives like 'walking buses' and car pools.
  • Providing free vehicle emission checks in public places like supermarket car parks. The popular programme has offered residents the chance to check if their car will pass its next MOT and raise awareness about harmful vehicle emissions.
  • Championing car clubs which dramatically reduce total vehicle use and take older, more polluting cars off the road. Wandsworth now has the highest car club membership in London.
  • Free bike safety lessons for children and adults to give more residents the confidence and skills they need to start cycling.
  • 'Dr Bike' cycle surgeries promote cycling and teach residents basic maintenance skills.
  • Electric vehicle charging points have been installed in key locations which enable residents to switch over to low emission electric vehicles.
  • A free airTEXT messaging service warns residents when high pollution levels are forecast.
  • The council promotes walking through a range of public health campaigns and smarter travel awareness schemes.
  • Making the boroughs more pedestrian friendly including projects in Clapham Junction, Southfields, Putney and Earlsfield.
  • Lobbying for higher capacity rail, bus, riverbus and tube services so more residents can switch from cars to public transport.
  • The council's Smarter Driving campaign encourages drivers to take simple steps to reduce their emissions like inflating tires.

For more information about electric vehicles, visit: www.wandsworth.gov.uk/driveelectric

Find out more about the efforts to tackle air pollution in Wandsworth on the council’s website.