European Commission Backs Better Place-led Coalition for Electric Vehicles

A coalition of eight partners led by Better Place today announced that the European Commission has selected their eMobility project, “Greening European Transportation Infrastructure for Electric Vehicles” as the first and only project to be funded to date under DG MOVE’s new “de-carbonisation” infrastructure category. The €4.95M award comes under the “Trans-European Transport Network” programme.

The project envisions the analysis, testing and deployment of a multi transport mode network using today’s road infrastructure and railways coupled with an electric car charging network of battery switch stations and charge spots powered by renewable energy along with intelligent transport systems. It is an innovative project that will serve as a technology roadmap for creating a pan European electric car network. The project is designed to help de-carbonise the grid – a key policy initiative for the European Union – and will provide feedback to ongoing EU consultation around the new TEN-T guidelines (2013-2020) and other initiatives shaping the future of transportation in Europe including CARS 21.

Six European Ministries of Transport – Denmark, The Netherlands, Austria, Spain, Belgium and Luxembourg – have endorsed the project during its application phase, demonstrating the high interest of Member States in the consortium.

With Better Place as project coordinator, the consortium includes FCC Construccion SA of Spain; Verbund AG of Austria; the City of Copenhagen; Elia System Operator S.A. of Belgium; Technical University of Denmark; the City of Amsterdam; Public Research Center Henri Tudor of Luxembourg; and DSB Kommerciel of Denmark. Better Place will participate in the project through its European operations.

The 2.5-year project that comes under the Commission’s e-mobility project “Greening European Transportation Infrastructure for Electric Vehicles” (2010-EU-91117-P) encompasses four key elements:

1. The deployment of the first battery switch stations in Europe – one in Copenhagen and another in Amsterdam;

2. Planning for a network of battery switch stations across Western Europe;

3. An inter-modal pilot for mobility services across electric cars and trains in Denmark, an example of which can be seen here:;

4. A policy analysis and report on the conditions needed to accelerate the deployment of an “open access” electric car infrastructure of charging and switching stations across Europe.

One of the project highlights is the debut of Europe’s first commercial battery switch station in Denmark, which is expected to occur later in June. The battery switch station is part of a national network of battery switch stations and charging points being deployed across Denmark this year with an initial commercial launch of eMobility services scheduled for the end of the year.