E-bike chargers replace ashtrays in the Netherlands

Finish the old, make way for the new! Dutch train stations are getting a facelift, including replacing their old ashtray terminals with new e-bike charging stations.

Some days the world smiles at you when you wake up to wholesome, old-fashioned good news.

Today is one of those days.

After Holland banned smoking in all of its train stations last month, public ashtrays have suddenly become obsolete. So now a new plan sees them retrofitted with a much better purpose: e-bike charging stations.

E-bike use is incredibly high in the Netherlands, where many people use e-bikes instead of cars for personal transportation. E-bikes can be carried on trains for the longest part of journeys and used as last mile solutions to and from stations.

Installing e-bike chargers on platforms ensures that commuters can charge while waiting for a train.

As Willem van Ewijk, representative of ProRail, explained to the Brussels Times:

“We want people to travel door-to-door in a sustainable way. Not only by train, but for example by bicycle to the station. By converting smoking stations into charging stations, we can get more people to use electric bikes. »

The new design of the charging stations comes from the Amsterdam company Lightwell.

Each pole can charge two e-bikes simultaneously. Unlike e-car chargers, e-bike chargers are generally quite low wattage, typically consuming around 100 to 250 watts of power. That’s about twice as powerful as a laptop charger.

Electrek’s Grasp

Less tobacco, more e-bikes – what’s not to like? It’s awesome!

I wish it happened in more countries. It doesn’t have to be a double whammy to replace ashtrays with e-bike chargers. But simply installing more outlets to charge micromobility vehicles would be a huge benefit.

Some countries like the US are still seeing an increasing number of e-bikes being used for commuting, but e-bikes are a standard commuter vehicle in many other countries and chargers could be a huge plus.

The amount of electricity used to charge an e-bike is tiny. In the United States, an average e-bike battery can be charged for around $0.05. A nickel. And since most people don’t stay on a train platform long enough to get more than 10-15% of a charge (just enough to keep going), we’re talking a dime a person. I think we can incorporate that into public funding, don’t you?

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