Preparing for the electric wave
World-Leading Assistance for Garage Orphans
Vancouver, BC January 4, 2021 – for immediate release
Time is running out for older residential building owners to benefit from world-leading funding for electric vehicle charging infrastructure. At risk: millions of dollars in government rebates offered to dramatically reduce owners’ cost of installing electrical infrastructure that will make their condo and apartment buildings EV ready. The Vancouver Electric Vehicle Association is offering timely help.
“This is a rare opportunity to get essential building upgrades subsidized by government” said John Stonier, President of VEVA, “And yet it is not well known. We want to change that and help these owners access the money.”
Access to charging is a precondition for purchasing an electric car. For garage orphans, those people who live in condos, rental apartment buildings or homes without garages, finding an electrical outlet adjacent to where they park can be an issue. Half of BC’s population now lives in multi-unit residential buildings that lack convenient charging facilities. This is a significant barrier to adoption of electric vehicles.
Some relief is already here. Beginning April 2011 the City of Vancouver mandated that 20% of parking spaces in new condos, as a minimum, must be wired for EV charging. In 2021 fifteen BC cities have adopted “EV ready” policies. Most importantly, the current standard for pre-wired parking spaces for all new buildings is for 100% coverage.
But what of the 98% of legacy buildings built before these EV friendly policies were adopted? While the technical challenges for adding EV charging for every suite in a building are not trivial, most buildings can accommodate additional electrical loads without rebuilding main electrical feeds. New power managing electronics make this possible. However, the cost to retrofit wiring to each parking stall can be a major capital expense and requires buy-in by the building owner, and this has been the biggest hurdle to date.
Support is now on its way, however, with the BC Government’s recently announced new charger rebate program. “This is a world leading initiative” said John Stonier, President of the Vancouver Electric Vehicle Association. “Nowhere has any government stepped up with this level of assistance to ensure that all multi-family dwellings will be prepared for an electric vehicle future”.
The CleanBC Go Electric EV Charger Rebate Program’s most important features are the EV Ready funding to support the technical planning for retrofit projects, and secondly, the EV Infrastructure funding that provides up to $600 per space up to $80,000. This is significant financial assistance that enables all strata and rental building owners to pre-wire at least one parking stall per suite in order to “future-proof” their buildings and add real estate value now for the growing number of EV owning residents. Having at least one parking stall per suite pre-wired for charger plug-in ensures that all suites in a building have equal attractiveness to future owners or tenants who are looking for home charging convenience.
With the wired infrastructure in place, EV Charging equipment can be added modularly, as required, at minimal cost. The Program provides additional amounts of up to $14,000 for actual charging equipment in addition to the primary infrastructure incentives. For 2020, the total incentives for a single building can add up to $97,000.
Time Limited – Need to Act Fast!
VEVA notes that the Program offer ends on February 28, 2021. To help strata councils and apartment landlords, VEVA is providing an EV Ready/Infrastructure Checklist to start preparations now, and has scheduled a public webinar for January 6, 2021 which will include representatives Plug-In BC who are providing free consulting services to assist applicants. The EV Ready/Infrastructure Checklist and webinar registration can be found at VEVA’s website www.veva.ca .
About the Vancouver Electric Vehicle Association
VEVA was formed in 1988 as a non-profit society to promote the use and adoption of electric vehicles through educational programs and outreach to the general public and corporate and government leaders.
VEVA membership is open to the public and engages members with monthly Member meetings to hear the latest news and developments related to electric vehicles, through weekly Meet-ups and on-line discussion forums, and through our annual electric vehicle extravaganza ElectraFest.
ElectraFest21, will be our 25th annual and is planned to be held at the Roundhouse Community Centre in downtown Vancouver on Saturday August 21, 2021.
Media Contact: John Stonier, President media@VEVA.ca (778.775.8456)