‘Electric Avenue Louise’: 300 EV charging points for Brussels
If there is one spot in Brussels where it will be easy to find an EV charging point shortly, it’s the Avenue Louise. Private partners are installing 300 additional charging stations in private parking facilities along the street this year. They will be open to companies and residents in a project called ‘Electric Avenue’.
‘Electric Avenue’ is a joint project of parking managing company BePark, with energy suppliers Sibelga, Engie, and car federation Febiac. The project won the jury prize of the first edition of the ‘303030 City Climate Challenge’.
Easy to realize
The latter is an initiative of BECI, the Brussels Enterprises Commerce and Industry Federation, bringing together 30 ecological transition projects to reach a 30% CO2 reduction by 2030. Hence the name ‘303030 Challenge’. It was launched in October 2019 with 19 Brussels companies and organizations initially. Today, there are already 39 participants.
The jury fell for the simplicity of the idea and the ease of realizing it in a short period. According to the president of the jury, Marc Decorte, also president of BECI, “Electric Avenue is a concrete joint project that offers sustainable solutions in the short term.”
“By the end of this year, it will improve electric mobility in Brussels, which will contribute to the reduction of CO2 emissions and noise nuisance.” The ‘prize money’, 5 000 euros will be ‘slightly’ insufficient, though, to realize these 300 EV charging points, but the partners will reach deep in their pockets and envision a business model to earn back the investment.
Managed by BePark
The EV charging spots at the private parking lots will be managed by BePark. The company already has the expertise of managing private parking spots to be used when the ‘owner’ isn’t making use of it, like companies, using the facilities during working hours, and residents at night. The Avenue Louise was chosen deliberately because of the dense mix of companies and residents in the district.
More than total EV charges today
Three hundred new charging points in one street, that’s more than the 250 installed EV charging points – public and private – over the whole city. Brussels is lagging dramatically, as the government is a cool lover of promoting electric cars. It rather wants to lower the number of vehicles in the city overall.
In August 2018, Total daughter PitPoint won the tender for a network of 100 charging stations on the public roads in Brussels, financed by the company and some European funds. But the project slowed down due to the lack of the 400-Volt network, necessary for 22 kW charging points.
100 public chargers by the end of 2020
By the end of the winter, Minister of Mobility, Elke Van den Brandt (Groen), promised there would be 35 more, and by the end of 2020, the rest should be functioning also.
To compare, PitPoint already has an installed EV charging network of 4 500 stations in the Dutch capital of Amsterdam. Last January, it won the tender to install 20 000 extra charging points around Amsterdam, an area with 3,2 million inhabitants.