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The electric car is on the rise. It should be, since Europe wants to be the global leader in electrification and has imposed political targets on its member states to achieve this. However, there is a major problem: the charging infrastructure is not evolving fast enough.
Today there is already a shortage of charging infrastructure, both in Belgium and in the Netherlands. In the Netherlands, about 70 percent of people with an electric car had a charging station on their own property in 2021. The remaining 30 percent depended on public charging infrastructure. It is expected that these percentages will change significantly, as the majority of the Dutch population does not have their own driveway on which a charging station could be installed (just think of the millions of people who live in the major cities). All these people will need access to public charging stations, and this is where the shoe pinches: the public charging infrastructure is currently growing disproportionately slowly compared to the rapid increase in the number of electric vehicles. We’re now at 100 installations per day, and that rate really should be 500 by now.
That means a 100.000-plus additional charging points are needed in public spaces. And quickly, too. A major stumbling block here is the ‘pollution’ of the streetscape, since all these charging points need to have a place. Xemex contributed to the solution for this problem and developed, in collaboration with Dutch Charge, Nedal, CityTec, PrimeVest and ABB, a multifunctional lighting column with an integrated charging point: the CityCharge charging lantern! This inconspicuous charging solution for public spaces is the way to smart, safe and cheap charging. Xemex contributes to this embodiment of sustainability and creativity by producing the technology on which these charging lanterns operate.
Recently, this multifunctional future-proof light pole passed the inspections and tests of ElaadNL and the Network Operators, making the innovation officially certified for public space. The first multifunctional lighting column was installed in the municipality of Renkum. Recently (01/07) this light pole was unveiled. Renkum is pioneer and also the first ‘smart city’ in the Netherlands that chooses this sustainable combination of public lighting and charging of electric vehicles. In the coming years, 500 of these charging points will be installed in Renkum alone. We are convinced that the CityCharge charging lantern can help to achieve the sustainability targets and expect other municipalities, both in the Netherlands and in Belgium, to follow soon.