Mixed opinions on the £318k EV charging points pilot in Sheffield

There are calls for the government to roll out electric vehicle charging points “at volume” in Sheffield and for there to be more on-street cycle storage.

Following last week’s announcement of the first round of a new £318k scheme that may see a city-wide rollout of electric vehicle (EV) charging points in nine locations from Darnall to Stocksbridge by March 2024, a Green Party councillor said it “wasn’t the entire solution”.

Cllr Brian Holmshaw (Broomhill and Sharrow Vale, Green Party) told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that he welcomed the EV charges but he would prefer the focus be on mass transportation.

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The opposition councillor said: “They’re (the EV charges) not so good on the streets. I think EV charges are best located at places like car parks, petrol stations and shopping centres.

“You’re going to start to get lots of neighbourhood disputes about it, people are going to argue that there is a charging point outside my house I want to use it, others want to use it and other people will come to my area to use it…

“You have to be very careful.

“I think if we are going to use the few spaces around the city for need, we need to be taking the Dutch model. It includes on-street cycle storage.

“Safe cycle storage could be done on-street with hangers… It would take up a car parking space but we’re talking that one car parking space takes up for six cycles.

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“This is a great solution for me. You’re taking vehicles off the road and adding cycles.”

However, Cllr Holmshaw added the solution should not entirely be on the local level but it’s the government that needs to introduce more measures – starting with, if decided as the best option, rolling out EV charging stations “at volume”.

He added a couple of charging stations “here and there across the city” wouldn’t solve the problem.

Last week, Cllr Ruth Milsom (Crookes and Crosspool, Labour) told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that while electric vehicles are not “a wholesale solution to everything environmental” they are “important and part of the solution right now.”