Plans revealed for network of 100+ ‘electric forecourts’

Gridserve has announced plans to build a UK-wide network of more than 100 ‘electric forecourts’ designed to deliver convenient, ultra-fast, low-cost charging for all types of electric vehicles (EVs).

Each forecourt will have dedicated zones for both private and fleet vehicles, such as taxis, buses, delivery vehicles and heavy goods vehicles, and offer a ‘new and compelling’ customer-focused charging experience.

In addition, it will take less than 30-minutes to charge most vehicles, and during this time drivers will be able to take advantage of a range of facilities including a coffee shop, fresh food, convenience supermarket, and airport-style lounge with high-speed internet.

The forecourts will be powered by solar farms and multi-megawatt batteries.

Construction is scheduled to start on the first sites later this year including at York and Hull, where Gridserve is building the UK’s most advanced solar farms.

Gridserve is also developing an app which will help people to plan journeys better, reserve charging slots, and pay for ancillary on-site services such as car washing.

We plan to make charging electric vehicles as easy as using petrol stations,’ said Gridserve chief executive and founder, Toddington Harper.

‘The latest generation of electric vehicles are awesome, and ready for mainstream adoption, but drivers still worry about if or where they can charge, how long it will take, and what it will cost. We plan to eliminate any range or charging anxiety by building a UK-wide network of customer-focused, brand new electric forecourts that will make it easier and cheaper to use an electric vehicle than a petrol or diesel alternative.

‘Within five years we plan to have more than 100 electric forecourts in use, with each supported by solar energy and battery storage. This infrastructure will accelerate the electric vehicle revolution, serve the grid, and help the UK meet climate and clean air targets. We are partnering with operators of fleet vehicles, developers, financiers of vehicles and infrastructure, EV manufacturers, retailers, local authorities, and others who share our vision,’ he added.

The company recently announced a pioneering new commercial model for solar farms, battery storage and EV charging at its York and Hull solar farms.

The projects have been developed in partnership with Warrington Borough Council in a £62 Million transaction that is expected to generate £150 million for the council over the project lifetimes to finance essential council services and urban regeneration.

Construction on the first 34.7MWp solar farm and 27MW battery storage system at York is now underway, and construction of electric forecourts at both sites is also expected to start before the end of the year.