Subway announced Tuesday plans to install electric vehicle charging stations at certain locations, one of its biggest sustainability initiatives yet. 

The fast-food chain is partnering with GenZ EV Solutions—a provider of electric vehicle charging equipment—to install “Subway Oasis” charging parks. This will include charging canopies with multiple ports, picnic tables, Wi-Fi, restrooms, green space, and playgrounds. To begin this multi-year plan, the brand will first pilot smaller-format charging stations at a handful restaurants in 2023. Customers using these charging stations will be offered exclusive promotions. 

The brand is currently working with franchisees of traditional and nontraditional locations to identify sites for smaller-format charging stations, as well as Subway Oases. 

The initiative is meant to support environmental efforts, add convenience for on-the-go customers, and provide incremental revenue for franchisees, Subway said.

“We’re constantly exploring new ways to innovate and exceed our guests’ expectations for a high-quality, convenient experience,” Mike Kappitt, Subway’s chief operating and insights officer, said in a statement. “Our partnership with GenZ EV Solutions is a win for our guests, our franchisees and our planet, creating a dedicated space for drivers to charge their vehicle while enjoying their favorite Subway sandwich.

GenZ EV Solutions works with RED E Charging, an EV charging network, to provide proprietary software and operating expertise.

Subway, the biggest chain in the U.S. in terms of footprint (21,000-plus at the end of 2021), believes it can significantly contribute to the country’s national network of charging station.

Registrations for electric vehicles jumped 60 percent in Q1 2022, Automotive News and Car and Drive reported using Experian data. As of last spring, these cars accounted for 4.6 percent of sold U.S. passenger vehicles. The Fuels Institute said the country will need more than 1.7 million charging stations by 2030. 

“Equitable access to charging is essential to the adoption of EVs in the future and Subway’s scale will play an important role in democratizing charging infrastructure for millions of Americans,” Jose Valls, CEO of GenZ EV Solutions, said in a statement. “By coupling our technology and know-how with Red E Charge’s strategic relationships and Subway’s network of restaurants across the U.S., we are continuing to make key strides in building the EV infrastructure of tomorrow.”

In 2022, Taco Bell franchisee Diversified Restaurant Group partnered with ChargeNet Stations to open a charging station at a South San Francisco location. The operator said more than 100 California Taco Bell restaurants will be equipped with the technology in the next year. 

Fast Food, Operations, Story, Sustainability, Subway