Parcel delivery company DPD has today opened the UK’s first all-electric parcel depot in the heart of Westminster and announced plans for a further seven all-electric sites in the capital.
London’s Deputy Mayor for Environment and Energy, Shirley Rodrigues, said: “London’s toxic air contributes to thousands of early deaths each year and is putting the health of children at risk so it’s good to see businesses like DPD preparing for the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) and helping protect Londoners’ health by transforming their delivery fleet.“
The new 5,000 sq ft facility on Vandon Street will be known as DPD Westminster and will have capacity to deliver 2,000 parcels a day utilising an all-electric fleet. DPD has invested over £500,000 refurbishing the site including the introduction of a state-of-the-art electric charging system that will enable the deployment of electric vehicles without major infrastructure upgrades.
Using all-electric vehicles in both the inward feed of parcels to DPD Westminster, and the final delivery to customers, DPD will initially see a reduction of 45 tonnes of CO2 per annum. This will increase as more all-electric vehicles and depots are introduced into the DPD’s all-electric network.
DPD has deployed three new types of all-electric vehicles to operate the depot. Two all-electric Mitsubishi Fuso eCanter 7.5t vehicles will feed parcels into the depot each day, while the final mile deliveries will be completed by two different all-electric vehicles.
DPD has initially bought 10 Nissan eNV200 all-electric vans capable of making 120 stops a day, and DPD Westminster is running seven of these currently. DPD has also deployed eight micro-vehicles from Norwegian manufacturer Paxster at the Vandon Street site and has a further 23 on order. The Paxsters are delivering to the immediate area around the depot and are expected to operate 60 stops on one charge per day.
Dwain McDonald, CEO of DPD commented: “Reducing and neutralising our carbon footprint; providing smarter and more efficient urban delivery solutions and driving innovation are at the heart of DPD’s DrivingChange programme. We want to be the leader in alternative fuel vehicles in the UK, with the ultimate aim being to move to a zero emission fleet.
“Westminster is clearly the first step towards that goal and will be instrumental in developing our future EV proposition and strategy. DPD Westminster is an outstanding location and the vehicles are fantastic. We looked at a wide range of options before making our decision and we’ve been testing these three models extensively in recent months. In terms of reliability and performance they have been excellent.
“There are still significant external issues to be overcome in terms of the infrastructure to support an all-electric fleet on the scale we need, across the whole of central London. But I’m delighted with our proposition here and we will continue to work with the key stakeholders to realise our aims and support the Mayor of London and TfL’s ambition for a cleaner and less congested capital.”