Electric Assisted Vehicles Limited has delivered two new vehicles to Oxford Covered Market as part of a Government trial for zero-emission delivery methods.
The Oxfordshire-based firm has delivered the vehicles as part of a £200,000 Government-funded trial to new zero-emissions delivery methods in the city.
Named Aria and Atlas by Oxford City Council, the two EAV2Cubed vehicles will be used by the various businesses of the Covered Market. As one of the rear cargo bays is refrigerated, it’ll be used for delivering fresh flowers, chocolate, meat and even artisan ice cream around the centre of Oxford.
The Zero Emission Zone Pilot will restrict polluting vehicles from key Oxford city centre streets during the day. Those who drive polluting vehicles into the zone will be charged, with the level of the charge dependent on how polluting the vehicle is.
Traders in Oxford’s landmark market have been consulted on the scheme over the past few years. Under the scheme, zero emission vehicles, such as the EAV2Cubed, will not be charged to drive in the zone.
Adam Barmby, CEO and founder of EAV, commented: “The Oxford Covered Market is widely considered one of the most unique and well-known landmarks within Oxford City centre.
“The opportunity for EAV to supply these unique vehicles for the Covered Market traders to use is really exciting, especially as the company is based just outside the City in Upper Heyford. We’re now really looking forward to seeing the EAV vehicles regularly on the streets of Oxford where they’ll prove their extraordinary efficiency and help to keep pollution levels as well as congestion to the lowest possible levels.”
Data published last week found that the significant reductions in traffic caused by coronavirus pandemic resulted in a 29% improvement in air quality levels across Oxford to the lowest measure of air pollution since recording first began in 1996 and the equivalent reduction from 2009 to 2019.
Now, as Oxford emerges from the pandemic, the Council is exploring how it can learn from the lockdown period to ensure Oxford has the cleanest air possible.
Councillor Tom Hayes, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Green Transport and Zero Carbon Oxford, said: “Oxford’s Covered Market is a jewel in the crown of the city centre and, opened in 1774, even predates the discovery of the United States.
“As Oxford prepares to become Britain’s first Zero Emission Zone, our historic city and treasured market is embracing a zero emissions future with the arrival of two new electric cargo bikes. Wherever you live in the city, you will be able to receive excellent Covered Market goods to your door using zero emission deliveries, so please continue to shop at our wonderful home for independent businesses.”
EAV claims its vehicles will help to reduce the carbon footprint of the market, ease congestion in the city centre, and will also contribute to the achievement of Oxford’s new proposed NO2 local target, which was set out in the city’s Air Quality Action Plan.
“It’s pleasing to see a highly progressive and environmentally proactive city such as Oxford take such a positive action to safeguard their people.” continued Adam Barmby. “We now hope that other cities will be committed enough to follow Oxford’s example and introduce EAV vehicles to help reduce and then maintain much better urban air quality for the future.
According to Oxford’s most recent source apportionment study, the transport sector is the largest contributor of NOX emissions in the city, accounting for 68% emissions.”