New charging stations for electric vehicles give drivers a meaningful break. In cooperation with the Danish company CLEVER, which supplies charging solutions for electric vehicles, Danish architects COBE are presenting their design for a modular system of ultra-fast charging stations. The first of the new charging stations opens in Fredericia, Denmark, in summer 2018. The idea is to let drivers take a meaningful break from their travels.
In the future, electricity will replace petrol and diesel as the fuel for our cars. However, while it takes approximately five minutes to fill up your car with petrol, charging an electric vehicle today is a more time-consuming exercise which can easily take 45 minutes. People lead busy lives, and every minute counts. The charging station of the future should not only minimize charging times but also create a meaningful break for the driver.
COBE’s design is based on a green rethink of the conventional petrol station. The new ultra-fast charging stations will not just be places where you can charge your car efficiently, but where you can recharge your own batteries too.
The charging stations thus take the form of a series of structural ‘trees’, with ‘crowns’ that filter light and shade to create a green environment with a calming atmosphere. The modular approach means that the design is scalable, and that one ‘tree’ can easily be multiplied to become a ‘forest’ depending on the required capacity. The ‘trees’ are made from wood and concrete with solar cells on top. Real trees, grass and low shrubs are planted within and around the charging station.
“Electric vehicles are the future. In our design, we want to offer drivers a much-needed and meaningful break in a green oasis. The energy and the technology are green, and we want the architecture, the materials and the concept to be green as well. Therefore, we’ve designed a sculptural charging station which can either stand alone or be incorporated with other facilities.”
Dan Stubbergaard, Creative Director and Founder of COBE
First charging station opens in Fredericia, Denmark, this year
The first of a string of ultra-fast charging stations will be opening in Fredericia, Denmark, next to the E45 motorway in summer 2018. In a relaxed and natural environment, the first ultra-fast charging station will allow four electric vehicles to recharge at the same time. The charging station in Fredericia will comprise 12 ‘trees’ and a 400-square-metre ‘crown’, with a combination of open and closed roof panels. The aim is for the new charging station in Fredericia to be an evocative and Zen-like experience.
“Time is precious, and we want to ensure that the time that people spend at our charging stations is a meaningful break for them. With the new stations, we are creating a space where, in addition to charging your car, you will also be able to recharge your own mental and physical batteries. In the 20 minutes that it usually takes to charge a car, you will be able to relax and get some fresh air, enjoy a cup of coffee, make phone calls or use some of the digital options available.”
Marie Kristine Schmidt, CXO at CLEVER
Over the next couple of years, a total of eight charging stations will be built in Denmark, and a further 40 in Sweden and Norway. Breaks in the stylised forests will become even shorter once the stations are upgraded from 150 to 350 kW.