North-East Worcestershire is set to benefit from an additional 120 EV chargers thanks to a partnership worth £2.1m between Redditch Borough Council and Bromsgrove District Council.
EV infrastructure provider Zest will provide and operate the new chargers, which will be installed in 33 locations around the area. The contract will be fulfilled at zero cost to either council, both of which will provide land for the chargers for the duration of the 15-20-year deal.
Redditch Borough Councillor Gemma Monaco, whose portfolio includes climate change, said she was “delighted to deliver on a commitment we made to our residents and businesses to boost EV charger availability in Redditch by adding more chargers on our land”.
Monaco added: “It’s something that more and more people are demanding, and the more we can support people to choose electric the better, not least because lower vehicle emissions means better air quality. We’re very interested in what we might be able to do next in other council-owned places, including in residential areas.”
Zest, recently named an NHS-approved supplier, is 100% funded by the government-sponsored Charging Infrastructure Investment Fund, set up to “catalyse the rollout of electric vehicle charging infrastructure that is required to support the electrification of vehicles”.
“We’re delighted to win this large, forward-thinking contract, one of the first of its kind in the West Midlands. Growing a network that makes charging easy, convenient and reliable helps make the shift to EV a realistic option for everyone. Where councils and commercial landowners have the vision, we have the skills and the funding to make things happen quickly,” said Zest CEO Robin Heap.
The partnership is currently developing a rollout plan, with the first of the new chargers slated for installation in spring 2024. The initial phase will focus on adding chargers to council-owned car parks and the councils’ primary workplaces.