Electric Vehicles


Project Data

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Enable is developing research to gain a better understanding of the needs of electric vehicle drivers with disabilities, in particular, those reliant on on-street parking and charging, to help them make the switch to electric vehicles and ensure no one is left behind in the transition to net zero.

What is the project about?

Motorists with disabilities who do not have access to off-street parking will require on-street charging solutions as they transition to electric vehicles (EVs). These motorists have specific parking and charging requirements as they need to park close to their home or destination, and charging infrastructure must be accessible.

If all disabled parking bays need to be electrified, this could have a significant impact on our network. Research by Ricardo estimates that up to 1.35 million drivers with disabilities will be partially or wholly reliant on public charging infrastructure. We estimate that around a third of those drivers are within our areas of London, the South East and East of England, that’s nearly half a million customers. If we know where these bays are, we can plan to ensure disabled EV motorists’ needs are met without any detrimental effect on our network.

To ensure no one gets left behind in the transition to net zero, we want to understand the needs of EV drivers with disabilities, in particular those reliant on on-street parking and charging.

How we’re doing it

We’re undertaking a research project in partnership with the charity Motability and local authorities to explore available data and evidence to identify the needs of disabled motorists with respect to on-street charging, the location of disabled bays and the impact of their electrification on our network.

This will help us to plan appropriate investments to ensure that bays can be electrified to serve our customers’ needs. This work will also feed into local area energy planning with councils as part of their wider on-street charging strategy.

The project will combine quantitative (i.e. identifying locations) and qualitative (engaging with stakeholders to learn more about disabled motorists needs) research.

Phase 1: Scene setting. Landscape and stakeholder mapping, data collection and literature review, as well as detailed research and stakeholder engagement plan to fully understand the issue and how to tackle it.

Phase 2: Analysis. Detailed stakeholder engagement and research, combined with market sizing and data analysis to help model the impact on our network. We’ll also design solutions to fit in with Local Area Energy Plans

Phase 3: Putting our findings into action. Summary of findings and development of a coordinated approach with local authorities within local area energy planning.

What makes it innovative

It’s essential that everyone has the opportunity to take part in the net zero transition and switch to an EV if they want to. For the first time, we are exploring what the network implications of the electrification of disabled parking spaces will be so that we can identify an appropriate investment plan accordingly.

By understanding the barriers to the electrification of disabled parking spaces, we can develop an approach to overcome them. Working in partnership with Motability and local authorities, we can develop a coordinated approach to serve the needs of EV drivers with disabilities that can be delivered within Local Area Energy Plans.

What we’re learning

The aim of Enable is to clearly understand and articulate the barriers to the electrification of disabled parking spaces and the needs of EV drivers with disabilities who use them. We’ll learn:

  • The needs of EV drivers with disabilities who park on-street;
  • The barriers and opportunities for electrifying on-street disabled parking bays;
  • The network implications of electrifying disabled parking bays and ways to facilitate this;

We’ll achieve this through engagement with a wide range of stakeholders in this space to both inform findings and share them back.

Reports & Documents

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