SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – A proposed Salt Lake City ordinance would require multi-family housing properties to make at least 20% of parking spaces electric vehicle ready.
“There are lots and lots of multi-family apartments going up in the city, and we just want to take advantage of this opportunity… going into the future because we know that electric vehicle, EV, usage is only going to grow,” Debbie Lyons, Energy & Environment Division Director, at SLCgreen, says.
Lyons says the goal of the ordinance is to reduce barriers for people who don’t necessarily have control over their parking situation but who still want to own electric vehicles.
“It’s really difficult for residents, especially multifamily, to go in and say, hey I need an EV station. Can we put one in?” Lyons tells ABC4.
She says the ordinance would save money in the long run for property builders if the infrastructure to charge electric vehicles are built in from the start.
The proposed ordinance would only require EV-ready parking spaces in lots with five or more spaces. And the cost for this infrastructure is minimal, Lyons states.
“The cost to incorporate the electrical capacity is really minimal when you compare it to the overall cost to build a multifamily development, and what EV readiness means is that the only thing you need to do is buy a charger and plug it in,” she explains. “There’s a conduit, there’s a plug there. We just want to make sure it’s ready so that when the owner of a multi-family development sees that they have a lot demand from residents, that it’s going to be really easy for them to just get a charger and plug it in.”
According to Lyons, the biggest issues Salt Lake City faces from a sustainability standpoint are climate change and air quality.
“Cars are obviously a big contributor to our air quality problem, so electrifying our transportation is an important piece to addressing air quality issues.”
Additionally, the Sustainability Department is working on 100% renewable electricity for the city, and as the electrical system begins to rely more and more on renewable, “having an electrical vehicle powered by renewable energy, this just the best way to address climate change,” Lyons states.
A provision in the proposal states that the EV-ready parking spaces have to be able to accommodate those with disabilities. The 20% of EV-ready parking spaces cannot be placed only in spots that are difficult for those with disabilities to access.
This is to “make sure people with disabilities are not facing more significant barriers to adopting electric vehicles,” Lyons explains.
EV charging stations are generally all the same, Lyons says. The variation is that some are free standing, while other models attach to a wall.
Lyons says the language of the proposal is currently being finalized and the department is buttoning up loose ends at this point.
View the proposed ordinance on below.