GRIDSERVE is set to build its maiden Electric Forecourt in Braintree, Essex, combining 24 ultra-fast EV chargers with battery storage and solar PV.
The site looks likely to become GRIDSERVE’s first of more than 100 electric forecourts planned for development across the UK, and will be located next to the Horizon 120 Business & Innovation Park in Great Notley.
That site is strategically located near major link roads in Essex such as the A120 and around 15 miles away from Stansted Airport.
Charging bays at the site are to be separated and set into designated zones for private and fleet vehicles, buses, delivery vehicles and heavy goods vehicles. While charge points will initially be installed at 350kW, the site will have the option to upgrade to 500kW and MW-scale chargers as and when they become available.
The firm is also committed to offering charging at prices competitive to home charging, something GRIDSERVE said is made possible by investing in both solar PV and grid infrastructure, such as battery storage, to provide clean energy to the site and flexibility services to the grid.
Drivers will also be able to shop and wait in an ‘airport-style lounge’ while their cars charge.
GRIDSERVE first broke cover with its £1 billion electric forecourt initiative in March this year, outlining plans to install more than 100 sites across the UK to bolster the country’s public EV charging infrastructure.
Toddington Harper, CEO and founder at GRIDSERVE, said that “steep growth curve” in EV adoption was driving the necessity for such infrastructure.
“Braintree is in the unique position of being the first of over 100 sites across the UK to host a GRIDSERVE Electric Forecourt. Every site will be powered by batteries and supplied by solar energy. With convenient, dependable, ultra-fast charging, we’re making charging an EV as easy as using petrol stations,” he said.
GRIDSERVE has lodged the planning application with Braintree District Council, whose cabinet member for corporate transformation John McKee welcomed the plans.
“This eco-friendly facility fits in with our vision for the park - to create a forward-looking business community with emphasis on long-term sustainability and future proofing to facilitate modern ways of living and working. All these contemporary amenities set within a landscaped, quality environment will make Horizon 120 the place to work and to do business now and in the future,” McKee said.
Further planning applications are to be submitted in the coming months, including for forecourts alongside co-located solar-plus-storage projects the firm is developing in York and Hull.