Fastned opens first motorway service station in Belgium

Fastned has opened a shop with a restaurant and toilets at one of its fast-charging stations for the first time. The company sees this as a kind of "motorway service station of the future".

Image: Fastned

Fastned wants to make the charging experience more pleasant via the opening of such facilities. The company has now opened the first location of this “motorway service station of the future” on the E19 in Brecht, Belgium, between Antwerp and Breda. Further locations are to follow, next in Gentbrugge, where Fastned plans to build charging stations with shops on both sides of the E17 motorway next year. The name “motorway service station of the future” alludes to the fact that fossil fuels can no longer be refuelled here, but only the electric cars of the future can be charged.

The shop’s range consists of products that meet the needs of travellers, according to the company. Luuk Valk, Retail Development Manager at Fastned, says: “On the one hand, there are the familiar favourites that people are used to finding in a shop. On the other hand, we have added new sustainable and healthier options that fit in well with Fastned’s values.”

The focus on sustainability is also reflected in the design of the shop, for example through the use of sustainable building materials such as wood. The building is designed to be very energy efficient and generate its own energy with a heat pump and solar panels on the green roof.

Luuk Valk, Retail Development Manager, commented: “When developing this shop, we put the traveller’s needs first. The shop is an oasis of light and calm, designed to offer visitors a moment of relaxation on comfortable lounge sofas in our ‘Greenhouse’. Here they can enjoy fresh Bocca coffee, use the washroom facilities or order a fresh meal in the restaurant while their vehicle is being charged.”

Fastned also hopes that the 34 motorway locations in Germany, which the company won as part of the tender for the German network, can be designed with a stronger focus on the customer charging experience in the future. “So far, there are no plans to build restaurants or shops at the motorway service areas, which would significantly increase the attractiveness of the sites. We hope to enter into dialogue with Autobahn GmbH and the Federal Ministry on this and ultimately offer our customers the best possible charging experience,” explained Linda Boll, country manager of Fastned Germany., info via email


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