“Complete replacement of gasoline vehicles with electric transport in major cities and resorts of Russia is quite real, but it may require decades to build the infrastructure" ― such is the summary of the publication by TASS (major Russian News Agency) (in Russian) on the problem of developing electric transport in the regions of Russia that gathered opinions of experts in this field.
Problems of ecology in large cities and resort regions in “peak seasons” force officials to think seriously about limiting the range of using vehicles with a gasoline engine. Similar proposals were included in the package proposed for consideration to the Government by the Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. The possibility of restricting the entry of petrol vehicles to the territory of certain city districts and cities in general is under consideration. However, according to all experts interviewed by TASS, today the infrastructure is far from ready for such radical changes. “The roads in Russia are not yet ready to provide traffic of electric and driverless vehicles,” the RF presidential aide Igor Levitin told reporters on Thursday”. In his opinion, new roads for electric vehicles in Russian conditions should be built and they may appear not earlier than in five years.
In addition to the inadequacy of roads, for the transition to electric vehicles, the authorities will need to solve another problem: to ensure availability of the alternative transport in the areas where the traffic of petrol vehicles will be limited. “We are absolutely ready to support restrictions on the entry to a city center of the transport with improper environmental requirements, ― said the Head of Kislovodsk Alexander Kurbatov to TASS. ― Now we are talking about restricting the entry to the historic resort part of the city, where pedestrian areas are located. However we understand that we have to offer motorists an alternative solution ― to create a system of commuter parking lots, a convenient transfer of vacationers from a parking lot to a place of accommodation with the use of electric vehicles.” Some experts believe that the specified transportation needs could be met by using new types of transportation systems, such as SkyWay.
A number of experts express a different point of view on the issue, stating that the solution to the problems of urban ecology should not be sought in the transition to electric vehicles, but in providing priority to public transport rather than personal one. In this connection the prospects of the SkyWay system is also emphasized. In particular, the article says, “The business community in the Urals offers to implement the SkyWay technology. The rolling stock ― freight, urban and intercity high-speed types ― is transferred on a rail-string overpass.
A draft project of the 18-km route with the estimated cost of 5 billion rubles was agreed upon previously in Yekaterinburg with the transport Committee of the City Administration, the coordinator of the SkyWay Ekaterinburg targeted project Arkady Biryukov told TASS. The speed on the route will be up to 150 km/h.”
Expert opinions coincide that the transition to electric vehicles in Russia will require the creation of new roads. Thus, this variant to develop the transport infrastructure implies the same efforts as the implementation of SkyWay transport. At the same time, by other parameters (eco-friendliness, safety, energy efficiency, speed) electric vehicles moving on the pavement are inferior to electric vehicles moving along a rail-string overpass.