Planning for Electronic Vehicle Charging Stations

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Governments from around the world, including, China, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, U.K. and the U.S. are taking steps to combat climate change by increasing access to clean energy technologies and reduce dependence on oil.  One policy focus has been on programs that will accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles.

A Bloomberg New Energy Finance report suggests that the sale of electric vehicles in the U.S. will hit 41 million by 2040, representing 35% of new car sales.  The future of electric vehicles, however, depends on several factors; including vehicle cost and maintenance, oil prices, government tax incentives to manufacturers and purchasers, and … vehicle charging stations.

Accessibility to vehicle charging stations at the workplace and at home are critical to the future of the electric vehicle.  Consumers are going to demand they be close to their home or better yet – at their home.  What leadership role will condominium and homeowners associations take in helping our country meet the changing needs of consumer choices as it relates to their vehicle?

The U.S. Department of Energy’s office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy will be working with the American Public Power Association to collaborate on fleet electrification – aka helping consumers find places to charge their electric vehicle.  Power companies and municipalities will collaborate to establish convenient locations for electric charging stations.  The goal of the Obama Administration is to establish a plan to have charging stations throughout the country close enough in proximity so an electric vehicle could be driven across the country maintaining the charge through strategically placed electric charging stations.

As quickly as the demand for charging stations will increase, the standards and practices for green buildings – especially multi-unit dwellings – are changing to prepare a building (condominium or townhome community) with electrical infrastructure to accommodate a future charging station installation.

The Obama Administration encourages collaboration with vehicle manufactures, power companies, state and local governments, universities and local communities to identify strategies and solutions for community electronic charging stations.  For more information about the Obama Administration’s White Paper on Electric Vehicle Adoption in the U.S., click here.

The community association housing model currently makes up approximately 20% of the housing stock.  In 2040, CAI anticipates community associations will represent a majority (more than 50 percent) of the housing stock in the U.S.  As we continue to transition towards this majority, it is each of our responsibility to take a leadership role in planning for the consumer shifts around us; including the electronic vehicles and the need for charging stations near residents in our communities.

Dawn Bauman, CAI Advocacy

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