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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So charging in Northampton has always been laughably absent, however I stumbled upon this: while trying to work out why there will be roadworks all over the area where I live. Buried in there it seems to suggest that there will be a charging post installed in Althorpe Road. Also that this is the first of three such projects in Northampton. I would be very interested to hear if anyone knows any more about these projects. In particular what the terms of the EV charging will be.
 

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Interesting find - but rather sad that one charger in Northampton is a thing, compared to 100s in Milton Keynes.
 

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Interesting find - but rather sad that one charger in Northampton is a thing, compared to 100s in Milton Keynes.
Its really sad that there are huge swathes of the country which are desperate for chargers yet they put them in the place that doesn't need them.

I expect AVDC will be installing some more Rapids in their car park soon.

There is clearly no strategy just a muddled plan, it's such a shame that tax payers money is being wasted in this way, it's a shame they can't follow the same model they have in Scotland, at least they seem to have a plan.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
I think I have figured out where the ev bays will be. They remodelled the area last month. Now it seems they are doing a whole bunch of other street works in the area as part of the wider project. I believe that what they have done so far is to create the area where the ev charge bays will be as well as build the foundations for what will become the station for a bike loan scheme. It is all in the space between Natwest and "It's a gift" in St James. I will take some photos and post them.
However, like I say, I am not so interested in the physical infrastructure, rather how NBC's have decided to set up their first dabbling with charging for public charging.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
I have spoken to the guys on site, and also the various levels of management. Here is a picture of the charging bays at the moment:

It is currently being used as the site office for the wider roadworks in the area. You can see the electric supply rising from the ground between the two black bollards in the distance. The plan is for two EV charging only spaces.There is however a bit of uncertainty around the whole thing now. This is where it gets interesting. Apparently the local councillor Gareth Earls is actively trying to prevent the chargers from being installed, and has a plan to do with a one way street for the area instead (I am sketchy on the details, sorry). I am going to write to him and congratulate him on being successful in securing the first EV charge point in Northampton for his ward. I am sure that he will want to hear from other interested parties who might potentially use EV chargers in the town.
I have also suggested to the folks I have been speaking to that they consult with the EV community before installing a load of chargers in order to prevent them from being done in such a way that prevents them from being used.
 

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Yes northampton is a sorry state of affairs... only chargepoint is M1 services or Riverside hub.. although Nissan's podpoint has been out of operation for over 16months and Toyota's is now broken but they were most helpful in moving cars so you could charge when it was working.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I have just sent the message below to the local councillor:
Gareth,
I wanted to write to you to congratulate you on managing to secure the first installation of public electric vehicle charging points in your ward. Northampton is notorious in the EV community for being a bit of a black hole as far as EV charging is concerned, so the points that are being installed off Althorpe Road will be hugely welcomed, and will make a real difference in terms of making Northampton a practical destination for EV drivers considering visiting the area, as well as more crucially making an EV a practical choice of the many residents living in the surrounding streets who are not able to drive an EV because of the lack of off street parking that is needed to charge such a vehicle.
As you will be aware, St James has a huge problem of traffic and air pollution. The issue of air quality is a particularly big concern for people in the area because of the incinerator project, so it is a very good thing to see practical steps being taken to make a first (albeit small) step towards improving air quality and hence the quality of life of the residents in your ward.
Many councils make the same common mistakes when installing EV charging that prevent it from being used as much as it might be. Issues range from the physical design and location leading to the chargers being regularly blocked by nonEV cars, through to the payment mechanism being impractical or overly complicated. You could make a big contribution in this regard by challenging those who are designing the scheme to consult with the EV community on how to avoid making such mistakes. A good starting point would be to head along to www.speakev.com and ask for some advice.

Thank you for all that you do to serve the residents of your ward, who are the same group of people that are my parishioners.

Phill
 

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Yes northampton is a sorry state of affairs... only chargepoint is M1 services or Riverside hub.. although Nissan's podpoint has been out of operation for over 16months and Toyota's is now broken but they were most helpful in moving cars so you could charge when it was working.
Only if you don't need CCS:confused:
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
To update Northampton folk, I have received a reply from the local councillor:
Thank you kindly for your email. Apologies for the delay in responding.

I am hugely supportive of any measures that will assist in the reduction of air pollution, which is a major reason I am such an opponent of the mooted incinerator.

I do have some concerns about the location of the proposed charging points, on the corner of an already dangerous corner, with regular illegal parking for people to visit the bank or nearby shops, is an unpalatable proposition. So I am seeking measures to make this safer, but as usual funding is being used an obstacle, but for me the charging points can only be viable with changes to Althorp Road, such as making it one-way.

So the suggestion for me to share the website with the planners is very welcomed and something I will certainly do.

I will keep you reprised of developments.
So it sounds like he is trying to oppose the chargepoints.<rolleyes/>

In other news on this, I have spoken to the site manager for the project who has told me that the plan he is working to is for the chargepoints to be installed once all the wider roadworks in the area are complete, which will be around the end of may start of June. The plan is to use "intelligent charge points" as he put it, that read you number plate and send you a parking ticket if you do not have an EV. Not sure about issues such as if you get a ticket if you park but not charge, training for parking attendants, signage etc etc. I have tried to direct the decision makers for the scheme towards this website to get up t speed on how to avoid common mistakes.
I would be interested if anyone has come across any other charge points that use ANPR to police their usage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Another scheme in Northampton, this time developing an old factory into a block of flats.The plans seem to have provision for 14 EV chargers for residents.
In this video the local councillor for the area objects to the provision of EV charging facilities. I have already told him what I think.
 

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Sounds to me as though his real beef is that the developers are scrimping on the amount of total parking, so that allocating spaces to EVs is (in his eyes) just making the general parking shortfall worse. Logically, I'd think he should be objecting on the grounds that there's too little parking provision rather than on the grounds of the EV spaces.

Also, he seems to assume that someone living in a 1-bed flat can't afford an EV, subtext EVs are only for the better off. So, maybe someone local should give him a few basic facts, perhaps the price of buying a gen1 Leaf and its typical per mile running costs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Sounds to me as though his real beef is that the developers are scrimping on the amount of total parking, so that allocating spaces to EVs is (in his eyes) just making the general parking shortfall worse. Logically, I'd think he should be objecting on the grounds that there's too little parking provision rather than on the grounds of the EV spaces.

Also, he seems to assume that someone living in a 1-bed flat can't afford an EV, subtext EVs are only for the better off. So, maybe someone local should give him a few basic facts, perhaps the price of buying a gen1 Leaf and its typical per mile running costs.
Yep. I have tried to make those points to him in the comments, but not with much success. It is the assumption that "EVs are not for us because we are poor" that particularly irritates me because it is clearly born out of ignorance.
I am meeting him on an unrelated matter relating to my day job next week some time - I will be interested to see if he brings it up.
 

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Hi to everyone in Northampton,
I am involved with Transition Town Northampton and I have done a bit of campaigning on air quality in the town too.
I have been tasked with trying to make sure that the local authority take up the grants that are available to install new residential charging stations. OLEV grants are available but the national take up of grants has been poor so far. The current funding is for charging stations in residential areas where on street charging would be difficult, terraced streets would fit this requirement. The funding could be provided for charging stations in car parks close to residential areas and I can think of few of these around the town that would service many terraced houses.
I am not an electric vehicle driver myself and I could give you many excuses as to why that is, none of which would really be satisfactory. Nevertheless, I am here and I am trying to help to push this forwards.
What I need in the first instance is your feedback on where the charging stations are, where we need new ones and what the general feeling is regarding the Borough Councils' input and engagement so far. The new low emissions strategy was published last year and I am sure that they are working on new charging points but are they doing enough?
It would be good to meet with 'activists' to discuss what needs to be done, perhaps someone would like to speak at a Transition Town meeting to inform and educate us. We could also set up a meeting at the council to clarify the current situation and the future intention, both realistic and aspirational.
I look forward to hearing back from you.
Martin Sawyer
 
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