SchippersStop: ‘Modern station needs more than gas and a car wash’
“You charge an electric car where you can stay for at least a few hours,” says Arie Schippers of SchippersStop in the Dutch city Veldhoven. And that loading does not necessarily take place at a location where you can refuel or wash. SchippersStop therefore has more to offer, from valet parking to bakery and meeting rooms.
SchippersStop has a 55-meter long Christ car wash. The truck wash also works with Christ’s machines. In Veldhoven, just under a hundred cars can be washed per hour. The station also has ten wash boxes and an interior square where customers can wash and polish vehicles themselves. “And for people who travel via Eindhoven Airport there is a special airport service where the car also goes on holiday”, jokes Schippers. You can park in Veldhoven, but you can also have the car washed, cleaned, the tires checked or get an MOT while you are travelling.
Eighty charging points
In addition to all these other facilities, Schippers has also focused on charging electric cars. Under the name Schippers Clean Energy, they have developed a network with now about eighty charging points in semi-public places. Charging behavior is different from refueling behaviour. You fill up a tank of petrol, you only charge at a petrol station if it is necessary for the journey – otherwise it will be charged at home or at work. Schippers says: “We think that the new way of driving and the new way of refueling will be different from what we are traditionally familiar with with fossil fuels. Our idea is that you load the car there where you will stay for at least a few hours. Such as at the gym, restaurant and hotel and of course at home.
Do washing and loading go together? In addition to a car wash, gas station and catering, SchippersStop also has a business point with meeting rooms. “With a course or training you can just sit here for eight hours. Then it is interesting to load here on the site. And you also charge with green electricity because we have the building full of solar panels.”
The installation of charging points in that semi-public space requires permission from the owner of the land. “This can be done for free for a home owner, but it also depends on the municipality”, says Schippers. “You have to take into account various costs, for the charging station itself and for the connection. If cables have to be pulled, it quickly adds up. Roughly speaking, the costs per connection are between five and six thousand euros.”
The energy transition is not new for Schippers. He is well aware that supplying fossil fuels alone will not suffice in the long run for a successful company. “My parents started delivering oil by horse and cart 55 years ago. That grew into a wholesaler of oil products. What makes us special is that we try to completely unburden our customers.” And that is currently also in the field of loading.