Manchester City Council reveals plans to boost the city’s electric vehicle infrastructure

Sep 4, 2023 | Transport

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Manchester City Council has unveiled ambitious plans to create hundreds of new public electric vehicle charging points to create an extensive network of public EV charging points across the city.

Manchester City Council is actively seeking a charge point operator to collaborate on this transformative project. The charge point operator will be entrusted to supply, install and manage up to 200 connectors over two years.

The plans will use existing council assets such as Council-owned car parks plus those at parks, leisure centres, libraries and other facilities to spark a significant increase in charging point provision. Where no suitable sites exist, consideration is also being given to using small parcels of underused council-owned land to ensure the increased availability of charging points across the city.

A budget of £3.3m has been allocated to this project by the Council –which includes £1.1m allocated by Greater Manchester Combined Authority as part of the City Regional Transport Strategy and an anticipated £2.2m from the Government’s Local Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Fund –

This funding will cover installation costs, while the charge point operator will contribute to the initiative, solidifying a collaborative effort to make EV charging more accessible and affordable.

As of April this year, Manchester had 155 electric vehicles commercially-operated charging points (with around 300 connectors.) But this number will need to significantly increase – by 2038 the number of electric vehicles in Manchester is estimated to increase to 140,000, representing 75% of all vehicles. A national ban on the sale of petrol and diesel vehicles will come into force in 2030.

Councillor Tracey Rawlins, Executive Member for Environment, said: “Dramatically increasing the use of electric vehicles is an important part of reducing the city’s carbon emissions to tackle climate change.

“We want to keep improving public transport and encourage active travel options, such as walking and cycling, for shorter journeys but undoubtedly electric vehicles also have an important part to play.

“While residents lucky enough to have access to off-road parking will be able to install their home chargers, we know that the 60% of our population who don’t will be reliant on a public charging network to enable them to change to cleaner vehicles.

“We are aiming to help spark the expansion of Manchester’s public electric vehicle charging infrastructure to build capacity and confidence until it becomes viable for commercial operators to take over and become the main suppliers. This initiative will be an important first step.”

Manchester City Council is currently reviewing a list of more than 40 potential locations for public EV charging points.

The quest for a charge point operator to lead this Council-led scheme is slated to commence later this year.

The City Council’s Environment, Climate Change, and Neighbourhoods scrutiny committee will receive an update on Manchester’s Electric Vehicle Charging Strategy on Thursday, September 7.

With these electrifying developments, Manchester is fast-tracking its position as a leader in the electric vehicle revolution.

As the EV market continues to gain momentum, Manchester is diligently preparing to provide its residents and visitors with accessible and efficient charging solutions, marking a significant milestone in the city’s journey toward a more sustainable and environmentally friendly transportation landscape.


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