Kenniscentrum Techniek

Charging infrastructure roll-out strategies for large scale introduction of electric vehicles in urban areas

an agent-based simulation study


On the eve of the large-scale introduction of electric vehicles, policy makers have to decide on how to organise a significant growth in charging infrastructure to meet demand. There is uncertainty about which charging deployment tactic to follow. The main issue is how many of charging stations, of which type, should be installed and where. Early roll-out has been successful in many places, but knowledge on how to plan a large-scale charging network in urban areas is missing. Little is known about return to scale effects, reciprocal effects of charger availability on sales, and the impact of fast charging or more clustered charging hubs on charging preferences of EV owners. This paper explores the effects of various roll-out strategies for charging infrastructure that facilitate the large-scale introduction of EVs, using agent-based simulation. In contrast to previously proposed models, our model is rooted in empirically observed charging patterns from EVs instead of travel patterns of fossil fuelled cars. In addition, the simulation incorporates different user types (inhabitants, visitors, taxis and shared vehicles) to model the diversity of charging behaviours in an urban environment. Different scenarios are explored along the lines of the type of charging infrastructure (level 2, clustered level 2, fast charging) and the intensity of rollout (EV to charging point ratio). The simulation predicts both the success rate of charging attempts and the additional discomfort when searching for a charging station. Results suggest that return to scale and reciprocal effects in charging infrastructure are considerable, resulting in a lower EV to charging station ratio on the longer term.

Reference Wolbertus, R., van den Hoed, R., Kroesen, M., & Chorus, C. (2021). Charging infrastructure roll-out strategies for large scale introduction of electric vehicles in urban areas: an agent-based simulation study. Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, 148, 262-285.
Published by  IDO-Laad 19 April 2021

Publication date

Apr 2021


Robert van den Hoed
Maarten Kroesen
Caspar Chorus


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