Installing electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure in multi-unit residential buildings (MURBs) poses significant challenges for property managers, the charging industry, and policymakers. While progress is being made with the inclusion of EV-ready regulations in building codes, access to charging remains limited for millions of Canadians. To gain deeper insights into the obstacles and potential solutions in this area, Electric Autonomy recently hosted a panel discussion featuring experts from SWTCH, ICON Property Management, the International Council on Clean Transportation, and the government of Quebec.
The discussion revealed that the challenges of EV charging in MURBs can be categorized into five main themes: navigating building and parking infrastructure regulations, streamlining stakeholder engagement and approval processes, managing electrical grid capacity, improving education and awareness, and addressing cost considerations. These themes highlight the complexities associated with policy, education, and infrastructure development in this domain.
An informative case study presented by ICON Property Management showcased the successful installation of EV chargers in a condo building in Toronto. Prompted by multiple residents expressing interest in EV charging, ICON embarked on a thorough assessment of the building’s capacity. With the assistance of SWTCH and funding secured from the federal government’s Zero Emission Vehicles Infrastructure Program, 120 charging stations were installed, with plans for further expansion in subsequent phases.
Despite successful examples like ICON, the lack of consistent policy regulations at the national level hinders widespread adoption of EV charging in MURBs. Each province, territory, and municipality has the authority to create its own regulations, resulting in an uneven policy landscape across Canada. However, provinces like British Columbia and Quebec have implemented policies and funding initiatives to promote EV readiness in MURBs.
Addressing the education gap among condo boards and property managers is crucial to overcoming barriers in installing chargers. By sharing case studies and best practices, the industry can better inform stakeholders about effective EV charging solutions. A structured and networked approach is essential to ensure scalability, avoid equity issues, and promote future EV adoption within MURBs.
With insights from international programs, such as the consultation service funded by the Dutch government, there is valuable learning that can inform Canadian strategies for EV charging in MURBs.
1. What are the main challenges of installing EV charging in multi-unit residential buildings?
The main challenges include navigating building and parking infrastructure regulations, streamlining stakeholder engagement and approval processes, managing electrical grid capacity, improving education and awareness, and addressing cost considerations.
2. Are there any successful case studies in installing EV chargers in MURBs?
Yes, ICON Property Management presented a successful case study where they added 120 charging stations in a condo building in Toronto. They collaborated with SWTCH and secured funding through the government’s Zero Emission Vehicles Infrastructure Program.
3. Are there consistent national policy regulations mandating EV readiness in MURBs?
No, there are no consistent national regulations. Provinces, territories, and municipalities have the authority to develop their own regulations, leading to an uneven policy landscape across Canada.
4. How can education be improved to facilitate the installation of EV chargers?
Promoting case studies, showcasing best practices, and providing structured processes can help inform property managers and residents about EV charging solutions. Education plays a crucial role in overcoming challenges and encouraging widespread adoption.
5. What can be learned from international programs?
Insights from international programs, such as the consultation service funded by the Dutch government, can inform strategies for EV charging in MURBs. Learning from successful initiatives abroad can help shape effective approaches in Canada.