WestEndExtra

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For a switch to electric vehicles charging points must be provided

07 January, 2021

‘Chicken and egg; you need to instal the charging points before people who have to park on the street will switch to electric vehicles’

• MOST people recognise electric vehicles are less damaging to the environment, yet it is totally impractical to own one if you have to park on the streets of Camden because there are so few charging points.

Take Primrose Hill, for example. In the area bounded by Regent’s Park Road and Gloucester Avenue, there are precisely three charging points for around 1,000 households, very few of which have off-street parking.

One solution is to convert more lamp-posts to include charging points – lots of them – so you have a reasonable chance of getting an adjacent parking space. There are even government subsidies available to encourage this.

In 2019 Camden published an EV charging point action plan. It states: “Officers have identified 50 lamp column charging point locations based on residents’ requests and existing EV permits… with installations taking place in 2019 and 2020”.

First, making decisions based on existing EV parking permits and requests is chicken and egg; you need to instal the charging points before people who have to park on the street will switch to EVs.

Secondly, 50 new points across the whole of the borough is a drop in the ocean. In Westminster, Sutherland Avenue alone has 21 points and Elgin Avenue 17. That’s the kind of commitment we need from Camden.

I’m sure some people will say they don’t care about any of this because private car ownership should be discouraged. That’s a very different issue.

The shortage of charging points does not discourage car ownership; it just ensures that people stick with petrol and diesel cars, which harms the air quality for everyone.

JOHN COTTRELL
Regent’s Park Road, NW1

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