Western Sydney train stations kickstart prototype ‘Power Spots’

Street Furniture Australia has designed and built prototype charging stands as part of a Transport for NSW program to deliver free phone chargers at 15 Sydney train stations.

Developed by Street Furniture Australia’s inhouse industrial designers in collaboration with Transport for NSW, the prototypes offer wireless, USB-A and USB-C charging, and can power 7 devices at once. They were built at the Street Furniture Australia factory in Western Sydney.

Two Power Spots are now installed at Liverpool and Campbelltown stations. The $1 million Power Spots Project rollout to 15 transport hubs including Bankstown, Hurstville, Lidcombe, Penrith, Wynyard, Central, Town Hall and Bondi Junction will be completed by late 2024.

NSW Transport Minister Jo Haylen said the Power Spots provide peace of mind: “In the modern world, our phones are our lifelines. They act not only to keep us connected, but as our wallets, maps, travel passes, and staying informed and entertained, so this is a no-brainer.

“Initially there will be 18 power spots at 15 locations across the network, with the aim of increasing that number at more locations.”

Where possible, the charging stands will be installed outside ticketed areas to ensure they are accessible to anyone in the community 24/7.

Station staff worked closely with the project team to choose sites that have high foot traffic, are easy to find, well-lit and monitored by CCTV.

The initial prototype is minimal and intuitive to use.

Member for Liverpool Charishma Kaliyanda said providing charging at train stations is “a great common-sense policy.”

“A powered-up mobile offers a real sense of safety and security for students, parents and people riding on our trains at night.

“This is going to be especially convenient for all the students who travel to our local schools, our university campuses, our TAFE campus, and to the many people who use the train to get to Liverpool Hospital.”

Transport for NSW Executive Director Rachel Simpson said, “A flat phone can leave you feeling stranded. So many of us feel anxious when our phones are running low and rush to make a call, asking someone to come and pick us up.

“Pulling up a map or public transport timetable in the palm of your hand can be the difference between confidently getting to your destination on time or not.”

Electricity use at each power spot will be monitored and the data analysed to help understand the popularity of different wireless and USB charging solutions, and the average time people spend using them.

Street Furniture Australia will also observe the use of the prototypes by the community, to continue to iterate and improve the usability of the design for the public realm.

The Power Spots Program is funded through the NSW Government’s Transport Access Program.

Wireless charging, and USB-A and USB-C outlets are provided.


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