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Cheltenham product development to collaborate on EV charging accessibility research

19 March 2021
The Business Magazine article image for: Cheltenham product development to collaborate on EV charging accessibility research

Cheltenham-based technology and product design company, Duku is to collaborate on an accessible EV charging project led by smart city consultancy Urban Foresight. The consultancy has been awarded funding for two projects to develop solutions to the biggest challenges facing electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure accessibility.

The first project will look at developing a solution to combat the issue of ‘bay hogging’ or ICEing (which is to park or block a space intended for electric cars). The plan is to revolutionise the way local authorities and charge point operators approach the creation of EV charging bays.

The second project will look at ways to make EV charging more accessible to those with mobility impairments, and work to build the confidence and independence of those who are anxious about how to access EV charging in different settings.

Working with a variety of disability organisations, Duku and Urban Foresight will identify the key issues for users and will use live design and test trials. The focus will be on finding solutions which are affordable, needs driven and allow for real change.

Alex Lee, Director, Duku, said: “We first began working with Urban Foresight in 2017, helping them to solve issues around on street charging for electric vehicles, the solution we developed was an innovative pop-up electric vehicle charger project.”

“We have a lot of expertise in EV charging systems and will be applying this to these projects."

Gary McRae, Head of Electric Mobility at Urban Foresight said: “Duku has already proved its capabilities to us and we know their expertise, particularly in the EV charging sector, is going to help us with these projects. We are looking forward to working with them to widen accessibility of EV charging and deal with some of the behaviours that curtail the use of available chargers.”

Nicky Godding is editor of The Business Magazine. Before her journalism career, she worked mainly in public relations moving into writing when she was invited to launch Retail Watch, a publication covering retail and real estate across Europe.

After some years of constant travelling, she tucked away her passport and concentrated on business writing, co-founding a successful regional business magazine. She has interviewed some of the UK’s most successful entrepreneurs who have built multi-million-pound businesses and reported on many science and technology firsts.

She reports on the region’s thriving business economy from start-ups, family businesses and multi-million-pound corporations, to the professionals that support their growth and the institutions that educate the next generation of business leaders.

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