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GRIDSERVE ‘moving heaven and earth’ in Electric Highway replacement works

Image: GRIDSERVE.

Image: GRIDSERVE.

GRIDSERVE is “working at a pretty phenomenal pace” to replace the existing electric vehicle (EV) chargers on Ecotricity’s Electric Highway.

Speaking to Current±, Toddington Harper, CEO of GRIDSERVE, said the company is “moving heaven and earth as fast as possible to get new chargers in place in hopefully every location”.

GRIDSERVE announced it has taken a 25% stake in the Electric Highway and is undertaking a series of improvements to the network earlier this month. The Electric Highway was first launched in 2011, with the age of many of these chargers leading to it being ranked the worst public charging network in a survey of Zap-Map users.

Harper said GRIDSERVE “recognises that the network we have bought into has a number of very old of unreliable chargers” and would like “that not to be the case”.

Describing the replacement works as the company’s principle focus when it comes to the Electric Highway, Harper clarified that GRIDSERVE is also looking to add “six to 12 high power chargers in several locations as well”, although he added that this is “more tricky because there’s quite a lot of grid challenges”.

He continued to state that GRIDSERVE is to replace the Electric Highway chargers with the same technology as at GRIDSERVE’s first Electric Forecourt in Braintree, which he described as "our starting point".

The site – which allows 36 EVs to be charged simultaneously - opened last December, offering amenities such as a waiting lounge, free superfast WiFi, a dedicated kid's area, a wellbeing area with exercise bikes that generate electricity and a range of shops including Boots, Costa Coffee, Post Office and WHSmith Travel.

It forms part of a £1 billion plan to create 100 such sites, with Harper telling Current± that the company has secured planning permission for a site in Norwich and a site in Uckfield. He added there are “many, many more sites” also being worked on, with the focus being on “getting these into construction as well as quickly as possible”.

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