Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Electric Vehicle Charging Station Is a National First

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Electric Vehicle Charging Station Is a National First

Article excerpt

Byline: COREENA FORD Business writer @Scoopford

THE UK's first fast "filling station" for electric vehicles has opened in Sunderland city centre.

The new station, managed by Dutch group Fastned, is at West Wear Street, close to the Wearmouth Bridge and next to the A1018, one of Sunderland's busiest routes, used by more than 21,000 vehicles using it every day.

The station forms part of the Go Ultra Low NE program, a Government campaign led by North East Joint Transport Committee and funded by the European Regional Development Fund and the Office for Low-Emission Vehicles.

The station is open 24 hours a day seven days a week, and will initially be free to use.

The free charging will end at some point this year as soon as the payment system is activated, and from that moment an introductory price per kWh will be charged. Charging and paying will then be possible with a charge card, debit or credit card, Apple Pay and Android Pay.

Later in the year it will also be possible to charge with the Fastned App, making automatic charging possible in the UK for the first time.

The station has four 50kW fast chargers and two 175kW fast chargers that are already enabled for 350kW charging, the fastest charging rate in the UK. The chargers can be used by all fully electric vehicles, with cars able to charge for 350 miles in 20 minutes.

Sunderland's opening comes a year after it was first announced that 'filling stations' for electric cars would be built in both Newcastle and Sunderland city centres. A second city centre station on Wellington Street in Newcastle - close to St James' Park - is also planned.

The North East is seen as a leader in the use of electric vehicles, with Nissan's Sunderland plant producing the all-electric Leaf and a number of other companies in the region also leading the electric vehicle industry. …

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