Barr Gazetas and Jaguar Explore 'Electrified Urban Vision For The Future'

Barr Gazetas collaborates with Jaguar’s Director of Design, Ian Callum, to present a joint vision for an urban future as electric vehicle adoption reaches tipping point.

Content supplied by Barr Gazetas

‘The Electrified Automotive Future and its Relationship to Architecture’ was the subject of an evening hosted by Barr Gazetas and Jaguar design, inviting a group of London’s leading architects, planners, property developers and infrastructure experts to participate in a discussion on the future of electronic car infrastructure.

Three concept designs, created in collaboration with Ian Callum, were presented to guests, showing Barr Gazetas’ vision for the ‘charging plazas of the future’.

Jon Eaglesham, Managing Director of Barr Gazetas, said “This study is all about realising opportunity. We don’t believe any of our concepts are particularly ‘far-fetched’ and all should be wholly possible within a generation: As designers of the built environment, a successful future for electric vehicles impacts every aspect of our work. We strive to create sustainable places that promote wellbeing, and automotive electrification will transform our towns and cities. National and local government and planners must act now so that we can confidently design for a cleaner, greener, quieter and far less destructive future”

Ian Callum, honorary RIBA Fellow and the brains behind Jaguar’s first all-electric SUV, the I-PACE, called for urgent action to address the critical need for well-designed and planned infrastructure to accommodate the fast-approaching tipping point in the electrification of automotive and transportation.

He said: “I am incredibly proud of what we have created in the Jaguar I-PACE and the reception it has received since its launch. It is a truly revolutionary vehicle with one of the most advanced zero-emissions powertrains ever fitted to a production car. The I-PACE is instantly recognisable as a Jaguar, with the beautiful design and dynamic capability inherent in our vehicles.

“As a designer, I am hugely excited by the opportunity this widespread adoption of electric cars presents. We have a unique chance for wholesale change of the facilities available to drivers as we reinvent usage and ‘filling’ patterns for our vehicles. The concepts we are presenting here with the team of architects show a vision of what is possible, what is needed and what it could look like.”

Barr Gazetas’ concepts were categorised in terms of their urgency and likely adoption, as follows:

Tomorrow – NCP of the future… This is based on one of the UK’s most iconic multi-storey car parks – on Welbeck Street, hidden behind Oxford Street in London’s West End.  Completed in 1970, and originally constructed to provide car parking space for shoppers, the structure symbolises an era of fossil fuel consumption. Re-imagined as a self-sufficient charging plaza, the proposal is to reinvent the existing stock of city centre multi-storey car parks, where owners of electric vehicles who are less likely to have access to off-street parking at their homes, can charge their cars adjacent to good public transport links.  The proposal at Welbeck Street makes use of the existing structural grid to support solar photovoltaics panels that will provide clean energy for inner-city electric vehicle owners to charge their cars. The result is cleaner and greener surroundings and parts of the building freed up for retail and leisure use.  A public artwork on the side of the building indicates the renewable energy generated to charge the cars within the structure.

Electric City – fast-approaching reality of completely emission free major cities… In this image, London is a cleaner, healthier city where repurposed, new infrastructure, connected to electric vehicles, has allowed a proliferation of vegetation and green space. Cities across the UK are electrically self-sufficient harnessing solar and tidal power to power the increased number of electric vehicles, both land-based and airborne.

Electric future – opportunity for wholesale change, up and down the country…Reimagining post-industrial wastelands.  Here we have taken Liverpool’s Stanley Dock as an example.  Built in 1901 it was once the largest building in the world, but fell into disrepair in the 1980s, symbolising lost industry and economic difficulty. In this image it has been reimagined as a community interchange, helping to rejuvenate the city through the creation of new community facilities and industries based on green energy on redundant sites country wide. Linked to the future of transport and car-free city centres, redundant brownfield sites like Stanley Dock can offer the multi-modal ‘last mile’ connection to cities, whilst rejuvenating the communities they are situated in.


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