Arup is urging cities not to create hazards for people walking in their rush to install Electric Vehicle (EV) recharging points. At the Cycle City Active City conference in Manchester, the firm has unveiled a new solution for EV recharging points that don’t block city pavements. Its ‘ReCharge Parklet’ transforms a standard parking bay into an EV charging facility and micro-park.
With an estimated one million EVs on the road by 2020, UK cities need a six-fold increase in the number of EV charging points. However, adding even more obstructive street furniture to overcrowded pavements could discourage people from walking in cities. Physical inactivity is a major cause of disease and disability for adults in the UK and encouraging people to walk briskly, even only for ten minutes a day, has been recognised as an important way of improving the nation’s health.
The ‘ReCharge Parklet’ transforms a parking bay into a space that combines EV and e-Bike charging facilities with a micro-park known as a ‘parklet’. It can also provide mobile phone charging, Wi-Fi, seating, bicycle stand and pump, and urban greening. The concept is aimed at boosting levels of activity in cities by making them more attractive for walking and cycling and improving social interaction on a street.