Ambitious goal of delivering electric vehicle charging points in all residential streets moves a step closer

Published: 17 November 2017

The prospect of electric vehicle charging points being installed in every residential street in Wandsworth has moved a step closer after councillors backed ambitious plans for a major expansion in the borough’s e-motoring infrastructure.

Following endorsement by the community services committee, council officers have now been tasked with exploring all available options for a major expansion of charging points across Wandsworth.

And this will include evaluating the cost and logistics involved in placing e-vehicle charging plugs in every lampost in the borough’s residential streets.

Cabinet member for community services Cllr Jonathan Cook said: “The future of motoring is electric. The Government has announced that in 2040 petrol and diesel vehicles will no longer be sold in the UK. This means that councils need to start planning ahead now to make sure we deliver the infrastructure to keep people moving. Nowhere is this more relevant than here in inner London where air quality is a real concern.

“Providing convenient charging is the key. We need to make it easy for people to go-electric.

“What we will now be doing is exploring all the available options to make this happen. Council officers will be drawing up a series of options to dramatically increase and improve coverage across the entire borough.

“There will be a range of options for us to consider once these investigations have been concluded but I am personally of the view that if the finances and logistics stack up then we should certainly be looking at as many lampposts as we can.”

Wandsworth currently has 35 charging points in 11 locations across the borough – and there are existing plans to install another 50 in 20 further locations by the turn of the year.

This is already helping to make owning and running an electric car a much more attractive and viable option for many Wandsworth residents.

But with growing concerns over air quality coupled with the recent Government announcement that petrol and diesel vehicles will no longer be offered for sale from 2040 onwards and banned from the roads entirely by 2050, Cllr Cook says now is the time to act.

He added: “We’ve already done a lot to tackle pollution in Wandsworth but we need to do more, and this ambitious initiative has the potential to achieve a real improvement in air quality.

“It would certainly help the Mayor achieve his pollution targets and following the introduction of his new T-Charge and his plans to extend the ULEZ zone to include the North and South Circular Roads in 2019 he will have extra revenue available to support tangible air quality initiatives like ours.

“Helping to fund a dramatic and radical advance in e-motoring infrastructure is precisely the sort of project the Mayor needs to support.”

Councillors at last night’s meeting voted to instruct the town hall’s Director of Environment and Community Services to “develop this emerging and ambitious strategy yet further, by examining the technical and financial potential to deliver a network of such significant scale and coverage that it might cover all residential streets of the borough and would very likely positively influence behaviour change in terms of resident and business decisions on vehicle ownership.”

Lampost charging would have no impact on existing parking provision in the borough.