Speaking at the “Zero Emission” Vehicle Summit in Birmingham today (11 September 2018) the Prime Minister has announced a suite of actions to support the uptake of electric vehicles (EVs), including measures to develop 200 fast-charging stations throughout the UK, representing an investment of around £200 million.
Zak Bond, Public Affairs and Policy Coordinator, Living Streets comments:
“The growth of electric vehicle charging points must not come at the expense of pedestrians. We have already seen numerous examples of the thoughtless placement of charging points on the pavement resulting in an unnecessary obstruction. This easily avoidable pavement clutter is inconvenient for everyone and particularly problematic for people with wheelchairs, buggies, or those living with sight loss.
“Road space, such as car parking bays or small build-outs from the pavement, should be allocated to accommodate new EV charging points. This would ensure pavements are safe and clutter-free. (However this should not be at the expense of current or future cycle paths.)
“Fundamentally we need to change the way we travel. EVs can’t solve rising congestion on our roads, and to call them “zero emission” is severely misleading as they produce lung harming particulate matter. Our towns and cities should be places where walking is the natural choice for local, everyday journeys and blocking up pavements with EV charging points flies in the face of that.”
Image: Electric vehicle charging points in Islington, September 2018. Used with permission, Steve Chambers.