Enhancing the territory and bringing electric mobility to the most important and fascinating Italian towns. This is the intention driving the Memorandum of Understanding signed between Enel X, Enel’s division dedicated to innovative products and digital solutions, and the Association of Orange Flag Municipalities.
The agreement, signed by Francesco Venturini, Head of Enel X, and Fulvio Gazzola, President of the Association of Orange Flag Municipalities, provides for the creation of a charging network in Italy’s 227 Orange Flag municipalities, all of which have fewer than 15 thousand inhabitants and which, in addition to boasting a distinguished historical, cultural and environmental heritage, offer tourists a quality welcome.
Under the agreement, Enel X is expected to handle the installation, activation and ordinary as well as extraordinary maintenance of at least two charging stations for electric vehicles in each of the towns of the Association of Orange Flag Municipalities. In towns that have already signed up for the National Plan for the installation of Enel electric vehicle charging infrastructure, the number of stations installed will be greater than the two envisaged under the memorandum. The programme for the installation of the new charging network is divided into two phases: the first, for members of the Association, will start in 2018 and will be completed by 2019, while the second will end in 2022.
“Electric mobility is proving successful not only in large urban centres, but with this agreement it becomes an important tool for tourism, enhancing the appeal of our country’s landmarks,” said Francesco Venturini, Head of Enel X. “We are enthusiastically contributing to the mission of the Orange Flag Association with our innovative charging technologies: the zero emission car is the ideal way to discover the artistic treasures in the historic centres of the most beautiful Italian villages.”
“The Orange Flag towns, besides being municipalities with a strong historical-cultural and agri-food vocation, are also highly sensitive to environmental quality”, said Fulvio Gazzola, President of the Association of Orange Flag Municipalities. “This agreement not only meshes well with the dynamics of the Orange Flag brand, but also fits the manner in which these towns should be visited, as most have fewer than 3,000 inhabitants: a “gentle” and non-invasive mobility to protect the towns and the landscape. ‘Electric mobility’ incorporates these two important visions, which are the foundation of this project. A project promoted by the Region of Liguria and managed as well as analysed rigorously by the Italian Touring Club (fewer than 10% of the candidate municipalities qualify for the recognition). The agreement with Enel is a step in this direction, and I thank them on behalf of all these small communities for having accepted our proposal, lending a helping hand to these towns with a service that will ensure the continued expansion of tourism.”
“Municipalities that have received the Orange Flag from the Italian Touring Club are towns that combine quality, innovation and results”, noted Giuseppe Roma, President of the Rome Delegation of the Italian Touring Club. “For example, 79% of the certified municipalities have opened new restaurants, 81% have opened new stores, more than 80% have increased their accommodation capacity. Important agreements such as the one with Enel X widen the base of services and the attractiveness of the towns, to the benefit of residents and visitors, supporting widespread sustainable behaviour. Everything contributes to the vitality of the hinterland: in fact there is an increase in the number of residents in the Orange Flag towns (+8% on average from the year in which the brand is associated with the town), confirming that this network, with a shared conception of how to develop tourism, has also become a great laboratory of social innovation.”
The Association of Orange Flag Municipalities was founded in 2002, through the collaboration between the Italian Touring Club and the Tourism Department of the Region of Liguria, to leverage the resources of small inland towns. The analysis that candidates must undergo to obtain the Orange Flag evaluates over 250 criteria grouped into five key areas: reception, accommodation and complementary services, factors of tourist attraction, environmental quality and the structure as well as quality of the town. To date, 227 municipalities that have obtained certification, equal to 8% of candidate sites in 2018.