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Plans Unveiled for 100% Electric Vehicle Capacity Motorway Service Station

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AFL Architects, in conjunction with Welcome Break, have submitted plans for a new Motorway Service Area (MSA) on the M25. The MSA will be the first facility of its type to have the capacity to supply charging for electric vehicles to 100% of its parking spaces.​

​The proposed MSA will be located in the Colne Valley, between the M40 and M4. Currently, the 44-mile gap between the existing services at Cobham and South Mimms exceeds that of Highways England’s recommended safe limit of 28 miles or 30-minute drive. The new MSA’s purpose is therefore to improve motorway safety within a planning area chosen for the minimum possible impact on the landscape and community.

The green roof and rising form act to visually sit itself in the landscape, resolving the massing of the MSA from the wider views.

The layout of the site and design of the building allows the site area to be kept to a minimum, while retaining infrastructural landscaping and all the amenities required of an MSA, thus minimising the impact on the Green Belt.

Extensive new planting will complement the existing treeline, acting as an effective screen to views beyond the site boundary. Nearby ancient woodland will be protected, and Welcome Break will deliver a substantial programme to enhance and improve nearby wildlife habitats.

AFL Architects Colne Valley Iver Motorway Service Station MSA 1a
"We are encouraging an evolution of our travelling behaviours by preparing for a future in which the electric vehicle is the default. The design concept is driven by this vision, while presenting a low-impact development form within the curved green roof and PV sails. We have been carrying out extensive public consultation on the project to ensure residents both benefit and are affected as little as possible."
Bruce Caldwell, Associate Director, AFL Architects

Initially, up to 100 open access Electric Vehicle (EV) parking and charging facilities will be available for the rapid charging of all EV types, powered by 100% sustainable energy sources.

Over time, as EV adoption grows, the charging capacity will expand to meet demand, further reducing the carbon footprint.

The MSA will provide for over 1300 car parking spaces and over 200 HGV spaces with ample provision for all other vehicle types and road users. A hotel is also being proposed for motorway users.

The project will create 450 new full-time jobs, and over 800 during construction, along with local supply chain opportunities during the construction and operation of the services.

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