Helen’s electric vehicle charging points to become part of nationwide network

Helen’s 35 public on-street charging points for electric vehicles are now part of the Virtapiste charging network, which is available throughout Finland.

The on-street charging points of Helen Ltd will join the Virtapiste network administered by Liikennevirta Oy. The joint-use Virtapiste network currently has 60 charging points throughout Finland, and a considerable number of them are in Helsinki.

Finland’s first public on-street charging point for electric vehicles was opened in Runeberginkatu as early as in 2009, and since then Helen has actively developed electric transportation in the capital region. Public on-street charging points have been built in different parts of the city and, for example, in commuter car parks along the railway line. The current number of Helen’s charging points is 35, of which 34 are semi-fast charging points and one is a quick charging point.

Introduction of the Virtapiste service ensures improved ease of using electric vehicles. The mobile app gives drivers of electric vehicles real-time information about the reservation situation and standard of equipment of the charging points. Through the app, it is also possible to remotely reserve the charging point and to start and end the charging. The app operates as a map service, and it also shows the charging points of other service providers in addition to the Virtapiste points. The service can also be used by text message or FRID ID (charge card or key fob).

Use of charging points requires registration

The use of Helen’s public charging points now requires registration with the Virtapiste service. The Virtapiste app can be downloaded free of charge from app stores, and you can register as customer at http://virta.fi. From 10 March 2015, the Virtapiste charging services will be available for registered customers only.

The service charges will be introduced at the same time as Helen’s charging points become part of the nationwide Virtapiste charging network and the services are expanded. Every owner of a charging point in the Virtapiste service determines the prices for their own charging points independently. The price of charging and the price formation may therefore vary from one town and charging point to another.

Prices at Helen’s charging points in Helsinki

As from 10 March 2015, the charge of Helen’s quick charging points is €0.22/minute. In semi-fast charging points, the price consists of the energy fee for electricity (€0.15/kWh) and time-based service fee (€2.0/h). In some charging points, which are regarded as commuter parking, 50% discount is applied to the service fee until further notice. The charging event can also be reserved (maximum charging time 15 minutes) via the mobile app at a price of €0.15 per minute. The pricing principles are presented in the following table. For more detailed prices for individual charging points, please see Helen’s website and the Virtapiste mobile app (as of 10 March 2015).

The actual price for charging an electric vehicle is affected by the vehicle’s ability to receive charging power and by its battery capacity.

• The use of Helen’a public charging points will now require registration with the Virtapiste service
• Helen’s charging points presented on a separate map www.helen.fi
• The Virtapiste app can be downloaded free of charge from app stores, and you can register as customer at http://virta.fi
• The effective prices are updated in the service
• Helen Ltd is a shareholder of Liikennevirta Oy which administers Virtapiste, ownership 10%

Virtapiste: A joint-use charging network for electric vehicles; started its service operations in February 2015. At the start of the service, the network had a total of 60 charging points.

Published: 09.03.2015 09:40

Seija Uusitalo
Team manager, communications