Electric Towns and Cities Initiative (ETCI) - Guildford is an £11million project from National Highways. It comprises of 3 elements:
- The A3 Electric Vehicle grant scheme offering up to £10,000 grants to businesses driving on the A3 in Guildford to switch their diesel to a new fully electric van
- A rapid charging network for vans, with bays and cables large enough for Light Commercial Vehicles to charge
- An active travel programme supporting employers near the A3 in Guildford to promote sustainable transport alternatives for their employees
Electric vehicle grant scheme for vans
The A3 Electric vehicle (EV) grant scheme offers grants of £5,000 for a small and £10,000 for a large new fully electric light commercial vehicle for businesses and charities to switch from their diesel van. To be eligible businesses need to do at least 150 journeys annually - that's approximately 3 trips a week or 12 trips a month - on the section of the A3 between the A31 to Farnham junction and the Guildford University of Surrey junction.
The new fully electric van have to be purchased through an ETCI accredited dealer. Only franchised dealers can apply to be accredited.
Rapid charging network
Whilst the network of charging points is being rapidly extended across Surrey, it was noted that to switch to electric commercial vans, businesses needed rapid charging and bays which fit commercial vans comfortably. This means longer and wider bays and cables of appropriate length.
We are working with Guildford Borough Council on a rapid charging network of new charging bays designed specifically for vans.
Active travel programme
The active travel programme will be launching in Autumn 2023 to help support local employers in the Guildford area of the A3 to promote sustainable transport alternatives and help their employees switch to more sustainable mode of transport.
Alternative sustainable transport solutions include :
- salary sacrifice scheme to enable the switch to electric cars
- using buses and other public transport,
- cycling and ensuring the provision of showers at work,
- car share schemes,
- installation of electric car charging points
Why these initiatives?
The A3 is part of the strategic road network managed by National Highways.
The section of the A3 that runs through Guildford exceeds the amount of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) emissions level with the highest recorded nitrogen dioxide (NO2) concentration of anywhere on the Strategic Road Network in England (excluding London). Poor air quality affects everyone's health, particularly the most vulnerable people in society. Experts have analysed the data and evaluated a number of solutions.
Surrey County Council, Guildford Borough Council and National Highways are now working together to tackle a specific air quality challenge on the A3 in Guildford. The 3 elements which form part of this £11million initiative have been determined to be the best value and fastest action in lowering the level of air pollution on this road section. Whilst focusing on the most significant contributors of the pollution, the scheme aims to improve air quality in ways that encourage a change to cleaner vehicles and more sustainable forms of transport without putting jobs, livelihoods, and businesses at risk.
The 3 elements of this Electric Towns and Cities Initiative are delivered in partnership with Surrey County Council, National Highways and Guildford Borough Council.
More information on the air pollution on this section of the A3 can be found on the Working to improve air quality on the A3 in Guildford - Guildford Borough Council page. You can access the A3 Guildford report, which looked at the traffic, journeys and sources of pollution.
The report determined that most vehicles using the Guildford A3 section are making journeys which do not start or end in Guildford; employment zones in the vicinity of the A3 are the origin or destination for a large number of vehicles; 80% of the nitrogen dioxide (NO2) emissions are from diesel light commercial vehicles and cars; and light commercial vehicles make up 15% of traffic but account for 45% of emissions.
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