Category Archives: Source London

Charging points will be upgraded and up to 20 new outlets will be installed

EV charge points to boost Westminster air quality

The City of Westminster is to offer a greater number and variety of electric vehicle (EV) charging points available to drivers in the borough from early 2017.

The council announced yesterday (30 November) that from January 2017, charging points will be upgraded and up to 20 new outlets will be installed, including some rapid chargers.

The smart grid technology company BPL, under the Source London network, is putting in place a new model for electric charging, while Chargemaster is rolling out public charging network ‘Polar’.

PodPoint will be upgrading the equipment and the council will be working with new operators to increase provision for EV users across the borough. A new range of tariffs tailored for different users of different types of EV technology is being introduced by the operators.

Charging points will be upgraded and up to 20 new outlets will be installed
Charging points will be upgraded and up to 20 new outlets will be installed

Westminster city council was the first local authority in the UK to launch on-street charging points for electric vehicles. It now has over 60 on-street charging points, with an additional 200 available off-street.

The council claims that the expansion of the EV network will also help its Marylebone Low Emission Neighbourhood and other air quality hotspots in the borough by reducing the emission of harmful pollutants.

Cllr Heather Acton, Cabinet Member for Sustainability and Parking, said:

“Poor air quality is a continuing problem for us in Westminster, but we’re doing all we can to help improve our environment through our Greener City Action Plan. This includes encouraging a switch away from diesel vehicles, with easy parking for electric vehicles and improving electric vehicle infrastructure, encouraging car club use as an alternative to a private car, reducing freight and waste vehicle movement, promoting more cycling and walking, eliminating vehicle engine idling and reducing emissions from buildings.”

Cllr Acton also explained that the authority is also trialling new measures within its Marylebone Low Emission Neighbourhood which “will help make real improvements to air quality in central London.” And, she added:

“Electric vehicles can help by cutting reliance on more polluting cars. The expansion of the EV network offers an improved service for those who need a vehicle.”

Read more: Air Quality News

Growth of the new Source London charging network

One year into its new ownership, the Source London charging network isn’t only improving its offering to electric vehicle owners, it’s about to become the basis of a large-scale car sharing scheme.

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“London should be even more electric vehicle orientated than Paris – it should be the leading city in Europe,” says Cédric Bolloré. “We want to give the citizens of London an easy way to use non-polluting form of transport. Autolib appeals to public transport customers who occasionally need to use their own car – one Autolib car takes nine cars off the street according to our studies.”

The challenge:

Bolloré Group took control of the former Plugged-in Places scheme, Source London, in September 2014. Notoriously unreliable, this included 835 charging points spread across the Capital’s boroughs, with a 60% availability rate.

In its first year, the Group’s subsidiary, BluePoint London, has invested £10m in a back-office system enabling boroughs to see how often the network is used, and replaced units as necessary. At the end of August, it reached 85% accessibility and grew network slightly to 845 charging points, targeting of 98% of 1,000 units by the end of 2015.

Read more: Fleet World

Source London repair deal reached

Bluepoint London, the operator of Source London since September 2014, has announced that it has finalised an agreement with Transport for London (“TfL”), the London Borough of Sutton and the London Borough of Southwark.

The agreement makes Bluepoint London responsible for the management of an initial 60 electric vehicle (EV) charge points, which represents 13% out of the 460 charge points in London boroughs as part of the scheme.

Next Green Car’s sister site, Zap-Map reported in September 2014 that almost a third of Source London points were offline. The new agreement will ensure these points are fully functional and compliant with EU standards as well as overseeing any necessary repairs for the benefit of the growing number of EV users across London.

Since taking over from TfL, Bluepoint London has undertaken an in-depth audit and will start implementing a live monitoring solution for all charge points which were part of the scheme. This agreement will start the deployment of a mobile maintenance team to assess the faults and start the necessary works. In the future, the points in the London Boroughs of Sutton and Southwark, as well as the TfL charge points, will now be serviced regularly to minimise faults and downtime.

In due course, other boroughs will be announced and, in consultation with local authorities, new charge points will supplement the network to ensure greater coverage and availability. By 2018, Bluepoint London’s target, via the Source London scheme, is to have 6,000 charge points under management across London to oversee the growth of electric cars in London.

Christophe Arnaud, Director of Bluepoint London, said:

“We are delighted to be responsible for these 60 EV charge points in London. This means we are finally in a position to offer electric vehicle users in the London Borough of Southwark and the London Borough of Sutton a better charging infrastructure and experience. This agreement is a key step in providing all Londoners with a sustainable alternative to traditional transport means.

“A better maintained and more extensive charging infrastructure will mean more drivers are able to use electric vehicles and join the early-adopters who are already helping London reach lower emissions level. We are very excited to be playing our part.”

Councillor Mark Williams, Cabinet member for regeneration, planning and transport, London Borough of Southwark, said:

“We fully support sustainable transport so welcome the opportunity to work with Bluepoint London to improve the management of electrical vehicle charge points locally. With better maintenance, we want more people to switch from petrol and diesel to electric cars.

“This will help reduce harmful emissions and improve air quality not just in Southwark but across the capital. Over 120 people die prematurely each year in our borough due to air pollution and we must do all we can to eliminate this silent killer.”

Source: Next Green Car

BMW i3 Charging (Image: Chargemaster)

Chargemaster Keeps UK Charging Network 99% Operational

Chargemaster, the UK’s largest supplier of electric vehicle charging infrastructure, is keeping its charge points in London and the rest of the UK online with its industry-leading operations.

Earlier this year, the British firm installed its 10,000th public and commercial charging point and, along with a telephone support line that is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to resolve urgent issues, has a dedicated team of electricians and engineers to fix any faults, typically within 48 hours.

David Martell, Chargemaster CEO, said:

“We are proud to have the best-maintained charge points not only in London, but across the entire UK electric vehicle charging estate. Our own Chargevision back-end management system is the best in the business and provides us with diagnostics on every single one of our charge points, every minute of the day.”

Chargemaster, through its sophisticated Chargevision system and its own dedicated national maintenance team of technicians, is able to monitor the operational availability of its network. Over the last year, its owned and maintained infrastructure achieved a 98.7% serviceability record for all charge points on a month-by-month basis.

Today, just two charge points installed and maintained by Chargemaster in London are not fully operational, and both of these are scheduled to be back online within the next few days.

David Martell added:

“We take maintenance and serviceability very seriously. As the UK’s largest provider of EV charging infrastructure, we have a responsibility to ensure that electric car drivers can rely on our network to enable them to complete their journeys.”

Chargemaster infrastructure is part of the Source London charging network, a scheme which involves more than 60 site/charge point owners – from local councils to car park operators. Contractually, funding currently exists for the maintenance of London’s EV infrastructure and Chargemaster believes that if this funding was properly reclaimed by charge point owners, any sites that are currently out-of-service could be brought back online swiftly.