London lamp posts to power electric vehicles

A new project which allows residents to charge their electric vehicles (EVs) by plugging into lamp posts has been launched. Kensington and Chelsea Council has joined forces with OVO Energy […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

A new project which allows residents to charge their electric vehicles (EVs) by plugging into lamp posts has been launched.

Kensington and Chelsea Council has joined forces with OVO Energy and Berlin-based Ubitricity to install an extra 50 SimpleSockets, which are charging points that fit directly into existing lamp posts.

It follows a trial by the council earlier this year and is now being expanded across central London.

The charging points will be located next to pay and display parking bays and will have a tariff of £0.165 per kWh of electricity.

To access the network, users will have to buy a cable with an inbuilt electricity meter from Ubitricity, with two options of £199 and £299.

There will also be additional charges of £1 for each charging session and £1 per hour after the first 24 hours of being plugged in – this is to stop people leaving their vehicle plugged in longer than they need to.

The additional income will be given to the council, which will use it to maintain the equipment and potentially fund future deployments and replacements.

Cllr Gerard Hargreaves, Kensington and Chelsea Council Lead Member for Transport said: “There is growing demand for charging facilities and a growing number of electric vehicles in Kensington and Chelsea. Most residents do not have access to off-street parking to charge an electric vehicle.

“Retrofitting street lamps with charging technology allows drivers to conveniently charge their vehicles closer to home, while helping to tackle air pollution in London. Lamp post charging is also more cost-effective and much less obtrusive as the charging points require no additional street furniture.”