The Government has unveiled a £70 million fund that will help motorway service areas upgrade network capacity to cater for ultra-rapid EV charge points.
Speaking on COP28 Transport Day in Dubai, Transport Secretary, Mark Harper, announced plans for up to ten trial sites in England with boosted electrical network capacity – ensuring electricity network capacity is future-proofed until at least 2035.
The rapid charge point announcement, part of the government’s rapid charging fund (RCF), will cover a portion of the costs of upgrading the electricity grid at successful motorway service areas, ensuring that the private sector can continue to expand the charging network.
This investment at service areas – strategically important, regularly spaced stopping points along the motorway – is designed to address the need for a highly visible and dependable longer-distance charging network to accelerate future EV purchases.
The pilot, which is being delivered by National Highways, will help gather evidence to inform the design of a full fund.
Also, the Government has launched a 10-week rapid charging fund consultation seeking views from a range of stakeholders, including chargepoint operators, motorway service area operators and electricity suppliers, on where chargers are needed most and how best to design the RCF.
Transport Secretary, Mark Harper, said, “Working with the private sector to provide robust chargepoint infrastructure is part of our Plan for Drivers, with today’s announcement paving the way for more ultra-rapid chargepoints.
“This £70 million pilot scheme is the starting point and sends a message to consumers and industry that we are investing wisely and rapidly to grow the future of transport in the UK.”