HYPER hubs - rapid charging points for electric vehicles - are set to be built at two Park&Ride sites.

Under the plans solar canopies would be installed at Monks Cross and Poppleton Bar Park&Ride car parks, with the energy they collect used to charge vehicles or stored in batteries.

Councillors agreed plans for the £1.5m scheme at an executive meeting on Monday.

The proposals include eight charging points at each site and Dave Atkinson, head of programmes at the council, said the hubs will "act more as a petrol station point with a forecourt" than somewhere to park and charge. According to a report, a typical charging session would take 10 to 20 minutes and up to 200 people could use each hub every day.

Cllr Andrew Waller welcomed the plans and Cllr Peter Dew, speaking at the meeting, said: “I’m quite impressed by this. It sounds like an extremely efficient way to use what we have already got."

Cllr Andy D'Agorne added: "I very much welcome this. I’ve always thought our Park&Ride sites were crying out for solar panels. People will only use electric cars if there’s the infrastructure to keep them moving."

The solar canopies would cover about 100 parking spaces at each site and a report prepared for the meeting said the plans mean people living on terraced streets who cannot charge electric cars at home may be able to charge their vehicles.

It says: "This project will stimulate the market in York and provide suitable infrastructure to enable the further transition away from fossil fuel vehicles, and towards ultra low emission vehicles.

"Many EU countries are expecting petrol or diesel cars to become virtually obsolete within the next three decades.

"Council owned charging points have usage rates of over 1,500 sessions per month, and have also been a catalyst for the use of electric buses on the Park&Ride network."

The council has secured £800,000 from the Office of Low Emission Vehicles and £700,000 from European Regional Development Funding.