At least 88 new, free electric vehicles rapid-charge points to be installed across West Yorkshire

Work to improve West Yorkshire’s air quality by encouraging the use of electric vehicles, through the installation of 88 new, free rapid charging points is set to get underway in 2019. After securing almost £2 million from the Government’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) for the work, West Yorkshire Combined Authority has appointed energy and services company ENGIE to install and operate the new charging points. Free until late October 2021 Each charging point will have two charging bays. One will be specifically for taxis and private hire vehicles and the other will be for all other users. Typically, the charging points will provide a full charge to an electric vehicle in around 20 to 30 minutes and will be free to use until late October 2021. The Combined Authority and its district partners, Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds and Wakefield councils are providing £1.2m of match funding. ENGIE will install, own and operate the charge points for at least 10 years. Work will soon get underway to identify suitable and convenient charge point locations. Cllr Kim Groves, Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority Transport Committee said: “Improving air quality across West Yorkshire and Leeds City Region while at the same time developing the transport networks vital to supporting inclusive growth is one of the Combined Authority’s key aims and this work will help us achieve that. “Installing new charging points at these 88 sites, where people can charge their vehicles for free, is designed to encourage the transfer to electric vehicles. “Making half the bays exclusively for the use of taxis and private hire vehicles could result in up to 500 diesel taxis and private hire vehicles being converted to hybrid and pure electric versions by 2020, which would reduce Nitrogen Dioxide emissions from taxis by as much as 18%, in line with our target of developing Clean Energy and Environmental Resilience for Leeds City Region.”

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