Taxi drivers' EV charging point in Portsmouth could be opened up to public as it's not being used much

A TAXI-ONLY electric vehicle charger could be opened up for use by the public under plans due to be considered by Portsmouth City Council's cabinet member for transport later this week.

By Josh Wright
Tuesday, 26th July 2022, 4:43 pm

Councillor Lynne Stagg will be asked to approve the move for the Stubbington Avenue car park on Thursday due to its ‘very low’ usage since it was installed and demand from people living in the area for more charging facilities.

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‘Officers have been closely monitoring the usage of the charger since the installation in March 2022,' the report making the recommendation says. 'The usage has been very low, indicating that the demand from taxis and private hire vehicles trade is also very low.

A Tesla electric vehicle being charged Picture: John Walton/PA Wire

‘Opening the usage to private cars and vans other than taxis and private hire vehicles allows an effective use of the infrastructure, which also aligns with the council's policy “to support infrastructure for alternative-fuelled vehicles”.’

The charger was one of dozens installed by the council through specialist firm Joju Charging funded through a £200,000 grant awarded by the office for zero emissions vehicles.

Speaking at the time, Cllr Stagg said there had been 'plenty of interest' from taxi drivers.

But the report adds that more chargers designated solely for the use of taxi drivers could be opened up to the public 'if there is no proven demand'.

The decision to prioritise the Stubbington Avenue facility was made based on analysis of requests made to the council from the public for electric vehicle charging infrastructure with 87 of these received from people living within a mile of the car park.

In order to cover the cost of maintaining a single chargepoint, the council requires their use twice a day while the council also pays for the electricity supply to them.

Should Cllr Stagg back the recommendation, the traffic order restricting its use will either need to be amended or a new one produced.