Woman in wheelchair getting on car
26th August 2021

Phase 2 funding for accessible charging technology

Improving the accessibility of existing electric vehicle charging.

Charging an Electric Vehicle (EV) requires drivers to handle cables that can be heavy, cumbersome, and often dirty and wet. This potentially creates barriers to the uptake of EVs for the 14 million people in the UK with a disability.

With government ambitions to phase out the sales of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030, it is critical that EV charging and infrastructure is accessible for all.

Urban Foresight has been awarded funding to commence Phase 2 of its work supporting the development of accessible EV chargers. The Scottish Government has provided funding through Scottish Enterprise’s Can Do Innovation Challenge framework.

This second phase will continue to test, trial, and refine the prototypes developed as part of Urban Foresight’s successful Phase 1 project. Up to three low cost, low tech, and adaptable solutions will be developed that will make using EV chargers easier and faster for all EV users.

This will build the confidence and independence of people anxious about their ability to access EV charging in a wide range of location types, by focusing on the current challenges around carrying, coiling, and connecting charging cables.

The project will be run in collaboration with Duku Design, a key partner during the first phase of the project. Urban Foresight and Duku have a rich history of providing innovative solutions to the challenges EV charging can present, including the Innovate UK funded Unlocking Accessibility project and the Clean Streets EV Charging Pilot.

Clare Pennington, Project Manager at Urban Foresight said, “We are delighted to continue the critical work we are doing with disability organisations and sector experts exploring the key challenges for drivers with mobility issues in using EV charging equipment and chargers.”

“Our research in Phase 1 established that ‘one size does not fit all’ when it comes to charging solutions. Real world live testing, effective research, and design processes will ensure our solutions are needs-driven, delivering genuine, impactful and affordable solutions.”

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