The EV service stations of the future could be just around the corner. According to the organization, the goal of the competition was to advance EV adoption and alleviate range anxiety, by highlighting the benefits of recharging on a long road trip, especially at a hub designed for that purpose.

Drawing over 100 high-quality entries from across the world, what emerged from the competition were many innovative concepts that redefine modern mobility – all powered by the minds of passionate architects and designers.

Chosen by a judging panel that included leading architects, retail experts, EV drivers and even the designer behind the LYRIQ, Cadillac’s first EV, the the three winning entrants from the EV service stations of the future competition are as follows:

1st place – “More is Less”, by James Silvester, from Edinburgh, Scotland

The winning design concept, ‘More with Less,’ is a timber-framed pavilion that provides charging bays under the shelter of a curvilinear canopy.

According to his Linkedin profile. James Silvester is an architect passionate about achieving sustainability through design and have in depth knowledge of a holistic approach to environmental strategies through BIM Software. He reflected on this challenge: “The competition hit home with me because the architecture I specialize in is sustainable design – low carbon buildings and low embodied energy. There was the opportunity to contribute to a very new typology – what we are designing is a question mark. If I could have some input in trying to define what this new typology is, then that would be fantastic.

“You could easily run away with a project like this and design something that’s more theoretical and out there, but I wanted to understand what this could be today. It’s a stick in the sand. Not fireworks and glitz and glam but something that’s of its time: very modern in its form but with pared-back, natural materials. There’s a rhythm in the timber. It’s about relaxation after a long journey“, concluded the winner.

For jury member Bruce Kuwabara, Founding Partner at KPMB Architects: “It’s as if Steve Jobs had asked them to design something. It is very convenient, very accessible… just very, very beautiful. And I think it would represent such a radical change from gas stations as we know them.

2nd Place – “The Circle”, by Fabric.a Architects from Istanbul, Turkey

Fabric.a Architects is an Istanbul based architectural design studio founded by Selçuk Kişmir. According to their website, the studio produces ideas and design in various scales and fields from interior design to the master-planning. 

Fabric.a approaches each project as a unique process with looking for a deep understanding of its nature and aims to come up with contemporary solutions.

Their “The Circle” does convey a modern sense of convenience, with natural materials like wood and a purposeful green context, ideal to relax and recharge positive energies…

3rd Place – “Plug and Play”, by Pavel Babiienko from Berlin, Germany

Pavel Babiienko is an architect and photography enthusiast, born in Odessa, Ukraine and currently settled in Berlin, Germany. in some os his previous projects there is a concern to give new purpose to urban car infrastructures.

In this from scratch project, the architect went for nature integration, playground and coffee shop areas, as you would expect from a modern and very funcional oasis.

Simon-Pierre Rioux, President of the Association Des Vechicles Electriques Du Quebec and jury member, summed up the importance to rethink EV service stations: “For Canadian EV drivers such as ourselves, it is important for the refuelling station of the future to incorporate easily accessible charging spaces that are protected from the elements, well-lit and close to amenities and services. The winner brought together these essential elements in a very stylish modular package that allows the design to accommodate larger or smaller roadside rest stops, while using renewable materials that give the design a sense of natural beauty and “zenitude.” We especially enjoy the interior gardens, and can’t wait to see this design breathe new life to Canadian highway stops.

From concept to reality

These winners will be awarded $40,000 CAD in total prize money between them. But more importantly perhaps, Parkland Corporation has plans to build the winning design of the ‘Electric Fuelling Station of the Future,’ moving the concept from the page to the real world. With the goal of setting the global standard for electric vehicle charging and customer experience, Parkland plans to bring the winning concept to life as part of their electric vehicle charging strategy in British Columbia, Canada.

From Turkey to Kazakhstan, Poland to Portugal and China to Canada, our team and jury was overwhelmed with the quality of submissions from around the globe. We’re confident that the concepts will spark a holistic rethinking – from the ground up – of the unique refuelling requirements and opportunities of EVs versus gas vehicles. It demonstrates great leadership that Parkland has committed to build the winning design,” said Nino Di Cara, Founder and President, Electric Autonomy Canada

Welectric view

Rethinking EV service stations is a decisive step towards the energy transition in mobility. Tradicional gas stations are not enjoyable places to spend time, mainly because of the unavoidable noise and air pollution. The need for slightly longer stops associated with electric vehicles provides the opportunity to create spaces that can deliver a relaxing atmosphere for travelers.

It also represents, in our opinion, a good business opportunity, with high quality services, like a restaurant area or a gym or even a spa or swimming poll, catering for the needs of every member of the family.

Hopefully, this interesting competition can inspire a movement in favor of EV service stations that could look like any of the three outstanding projects the jury distinguished.

About Electric Autonomy

Electric Autonomy is the leading news and events platform focused on advancing Canada’s transition to safer, cleaner and more affordable mobility and transportation through the adoption of electric and autonomous vehicle technologies and new mobility services. For more information: https://electricautonomy.ca/ 

About competition sponsors

Presented by Electric Autonomy Canada, and led by title sponsor, Parkland Corp., the design competition also serves as a meeting point for stakeholders to guide the transition to an EV-centric future.
Partners for the design competition include: Parkland — Presenting Sponsor; Cadillac — Automotive Sponsor; CIBC — Banking Sponsor; Dentons — Legal Sponsor; AVÉQ — Representing EV owners in Quebec; and EV Society — Representing EV owners in English Canada.

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