Surrey County Council has been awarded £470,000 to install 80 fast on-street charging points for electric vehicles across Woking, Spelthorne, Guildford and Waverley Borough Councils in the next year. The partner boroughs have provided a combined match funding of £170,000 and along with an additional £15,000 private sector funding, the total project budget is £656,000.
The majority of the funding has been granted by Enterprise M3 Local Enterprise Partnership, a public sector body which helps to deliver increased productivity, prosperity and an improved quality of life for people living and working in the area.
The project is part of a pilot to help understand the infrastructure required to encourage ownership of electric vehicles within Surrey and help people switch from petrol and diesel vehicles. Particular attention will be paid to areas where there is concern over air quality, or where there is a lack of off-street parking, with the aim of identifying where the charging points need to be to best serve residents. Work is expected to start in early 2020 with completion due in about twelve months.
Matt Furniss, Cabinet Member for Highways, said, “This scheme is vitally important in helping us get the correct infrastructure in place for people to be able to replace their polluting petrol and diesel cars with more environmentally-friendly electric vehicles. Focusing on built-up areas will ensure the air quality is improved in towns that need it the most, benefiting the residents who live and work there, and delivering on our commitment to improve air quality.”
EM3’s Head of Transport, Kevin Travers, said: “This investment is in line with our low carbon, clean growth and smart mobility aspirations as set out in the emerging Local Industrial Strategy, our vision for the area's growth. The boost in electric vehicle infrastructure will make towns more attractive places to live, fostering growth of new homes and employment and attracting young entrepreneurs who have the potential to create jobs of tomorrow and enable future wealth.”
As part of the project, a mobile application is being trialled to encourage people out of their cars and to use healthier, more sustainable travel options. The app, developed in partnership with Enterprise M3, will bring together different modes of transport including, buses, trains, taxis, electric bicycles and walking routes, to show people the best way to travel. The app will also allow users to make payments for travel, across all forms, making it easier and simpler to make multi-mode journeys.