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Facilitating a sustainable transition to electric vehicles in the regions (FASTER) is a collaborative project between Scotland, Northern Ireland and Ireland aiming to install rapid chargers in rural areas of these countries. For their part of the project, HITRANS will install single rapid chargers at 24 sites across western Scotland. As part of this, they have developed bay designs and a procurement tender evaluation that take account of the accessibility of the chargepoints.


HITRANS were aware that where they were installing chargepoints, these might be the only rapid chargers over a wide surrounding area. They therefore wanted to maximise the number of drivers able to make use of these points.


HITRANS wanted to maximise inclusivity as part of their project design, to give confidence to all electric vehicle drivers that they would be able to charge at the FASTER sites.

Progress so far

HITRANS created an initial universal bay design (pictured below) with 1.2m wide hatched markings on either side. This was to enable drivers and passengers with wheelchairs or other mobility aids to comfortably manoeuvre around their vehicle. Each space was also 1.2m longer than a standard bay. This was to give disabled people extra room for plugging and unplugging the connector at the front or rear of the space, depending on the charging port location. The longer bays have the added advantage of being able to accommodate light vans.

HITRANS is looking to amend these designs where space and demand allow (pictured below) to align with guidance appearing in PAS1899:2022 standard for electric vehicle charging accessibility. For example, this recommends increasing the length of bays and including marked hatchings to the front and rear where space is available.

As part of the evaluation of tender responses for their project, in consultation with Urban Foresight, HITRANS included a suitably weighted question with a list of ten criteria related to accessibility design. This included basic requirements needed to pass the section, along with desirable features which would boost the scores of bidders able to provide them. These criteria were as follows:

  1. Socket position
  2. Position of information panels/display screens
  3. Accessible communication
  4. Physical barriers to chargepoints
  5. Socket accessibility
  6. Cable management
  7. Emergency assistance
  8. Shelter
  9. Lighting and personal security
  10. Future development

Challenges faced

As the project began before the PAS 1899:2022 accessibility standards had been developed, HITRANS could not draw on this guidance during the initial design phase.

Due to space constraints, not all car parks could accommodate a fully accessible design, particularly not small ones.

Key lessons learned

  • The additional space requirements of locations designed with accessibility in mind need to be built into the site selection process.
  • It’s important to finalise design decisions relating to accessibility early on, so that the project brief is clear, thereby allowing potential suppliers to properly price their bids.
  • The reality of what chargepoint suppliers can actually provide needs to be considered as part of the project design.
  • A carefully designed procurement process is key to successfully developing a chargepoint installation that is as inclusive as possible.
  • The level of accessibility should be maximised at each site, though there will be variation in what is achievable across different sites – every little helps.

Further information

Please visit the FASTER project’s website to learn more.

FASTER’s original universal bay design
FASTER’s amended bay design aligned with PAS guidance.