Electric Vehicle Readiness in New Construction

Starting October 1, 2020, Victoria will require EV readiness in new buildings.

This means that residential and commercial developments must have energized electrical outlets installed at the time of construction that are capable of charging for an electric vehicle when a charging station is installed the future.

Background & Direction

Electric vehicles (EVs) are increasingly popular and while the market for EVs is still small, it is growing rapidly and this trend is projected to continue. The use of EVs instead of internal combustion engine vehicles helps improve air quality, fight climate change, reduce noise, and foster green economic development, among other benefits. The City's Climate Leadership Plan, Official Community Plan, and GoVictoria support policy to encourage the adoption of EVs as one strategy to reduce the 40% of community emissions associated with on road transportation.

Climate Leadership Plan Targets: ​

  • By 2030, renewable energy powers 30% of passenger vehicles ​
  • By 2050, 100% of passenger vehicles are renewably powered​

The availability of EV charging at home is one of the most important factors in an individual’s decision to purchase an EV. New homes can be equipped with EV charging economically relative to the cost of retrofitting at a later date. Energy management system technology, which allows multiple charging points to safely use a single circuit simultaneously, also makes it more feasible to install EV charging in multi-family residential buildings.

What Has Changed?

In July 2020, the City of Victoria amended the Zoning Bylaw and Zoning Regulation Bylaw to require EV charging infrastructure in new all new residential developments and some commercial developments, with changes that come into effect on October 1, 2020. See the Technical Bulletin [PDF - 112 KB] for more information.

  1. Requirements for New Residential Developments

    100% of required residential parking spaces in new residential developments must have an energized electrical outlet installed that is capable of providing Level 2 (208 to 240 volts) charging for an electric vehicle. This requirement applies to both single-family and multiple unit residential dwellings but does not apply to visitor parking spaces.

    Use or Class of Use

    Minimum Number of Energized Electric Vehicle Outlets

    Residential

    Single Family Dwelling

    1 per required vehicle parking space

    Two Family Dwelling

    1 per required vehicle parking space

    Semi-attached Dwelling

    1 per required vehicle parking space

    Secondary Suite or Garden Suite

    n/a

    All other residential uses not specifically identified in this table

    1 per vehicle parking space

    Multiple Dwelling

    Condominium, Apartment, Affordable

    1 per vehicle parking space

    All other multiple dwellings not specifically identified in this table

    1 per vehicle parking space

  2. Requirements for New Commercial Developments

    5% of parking spaces in new commercial developments over a certain threshold (see bylaw for requirement) must each have an energized electrical outlet installed capable of providing Level 2 (208 to 240 volts) charging for an electric vehicle.

    Commercial, Institutional and Industrial

    Number of Vehicle Parking Spaces Provided

     

    <10

    n/a

    10-14

    1

    >15

    2 energized electric vehicle outlets or 5% of the total number of required vehicle parking spaces, whichever is greater

  3. Technical Requirements

    An ‘energized electric vehicle outlet’ is a connected point in an electrical wiring installation at which current is taken and a source of voltage is connected to supply utilization equipment for the specific purpose of charging an electric vehicle.

    Energized Electric Vehicle Outlet Requirements:

    1. All energized electric vehicle outlets must provide, at a minimum, a Level 2 electric charging level as defined by Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) International’s J1772 standard.
    2. Energized electric vehicle outlets must be labelled for their intended use for electric vehicle charging only.
    3. An energized electric vehicle outlet must be assigned to an individual vehicle parking stall and must be located no further than 1.0m from that stall. 
    4. No more than one energized electric vehicle outlet may be assigned to an individual vehicle parking stall.

    Requirements #2 and 3 do not apply to single family dwellings, two-family dwellings, or semi-attached dwellings.

  4. Energy Management Systems

    An ‘Electric Vehicle Energy Management System’ is a system consisting of monitors, communications equipment, controllers, timers, and other applicable devices used to control EV supply equipment loads through the process of connecting, disconnecting, increasing, or reducing electric power to the loads.

    These control technologies enable the power drawn to be shared or prioritized between chargers, thereby reducing peak power demand, making efficient use of electrical capacity, and greatly reducing electrical infrastructure costs.

  5. Performance Requirements for Electric Vehicle Energy Management Systems

    Where an electric vehicle energy management system is installed, it must meet the following performance requirements:

    1. A baseline performance standard of at least 12kWh per EV over an eight hour period is required when all EVs are charging simultaneously (i.e. allocate at least 8A per electric vehicle on a 208V or 240V circuit, if all EVs are sharing power equally).  Greater allowable levels of sharing are appropriate beyond 80A, given the greater diversity of electrical loads possible at these higher amperages.
    2.  The allowable maximum number of EVs per circuit breaker amperage is as follows:

    Circuit Breaker Amperage

    Maximum Number of Electric Vehicles

    20

    1

    30

    2

    40

    4

    50

    5

    60

    6

    70

    7

    80

    8

    90

    10

    100

    11

    125

    14

  6. What About In-Stream Development Applications?

    This policy comes into effect on October 1, 2020 and will not apply to in-stream applications. Meaning it does not apply to developments that have submitted a complete application for a Development Permit or rezoning (or other application types under the Land Use Procedure Bylaw) or Building Permit in those cases where no Development Permits or rezoning is needed.

    From the bylaws: “If a complete application for a permit in accordance with the Land Use Procedures Bylaw or the Building and Plumbing Regulation Bylaw has been received by the City prior to October 1, 2020, then the provisions of Part 5 of the Zoning Bylaw 2018, No. 18-072  as it was on the day before the Zoning Bylaw 2018 Amendment Bylaw No. 5, 20-075, will apply to the parking spaces of the development that is the subject of the permit.”

  7. More Information