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National Planning Summit 2021 – EV Charging Points

Jodie Farnill recently attended the virtual National Planning Summit 2021 which included presentations on a variety of planning-related topics. One of the key items discussed was the provision of Electric Vehicle (EV) charging points in new developments in preparation for the Government’s phasing out of new petrol and diesel vehicles by 2030.

We have found that local planning authorities are increasingly imposing planning conditions requiring EV charging points to be provided in new developments and developers need to be mindful of this when designing their schemes.  The charging point locations and infrastructure requirements need to be considered carefully, e.g. adjacent to private driveways or parking spaces, but developers also need to ensure that the site has sufficient capacity to meet the likely increase in electricity demand.

However, rather than being a burden on development, the inclusion of EV charging points should be viewed by developers as a positive marketing tool.  In a survey commissioned by EV charging infrastructure providers Connected Kerb, it was found that 89% of people would be encouraged to buy an electric vehicle if they were offered access to a charging point; however, at present 62% of the population cannot charge a vehicle at home.  Access to a private charging point will be something that homebuyers increasingly look for, especially those that have already purchased an electric car.

The Government’s move towards zero emission vehicles is underpinned by over £1.8 billion of support in the form of grants for homeowners, businesses and local authorities to install charge points.  In many of our projects, we have agreed with the local planning authority, or the Planning Inspectorate, that the developer will install the necessary hardwiring infrastructure to allow future occupiers to install an EV charging unit, rather than the developer installing the unit themselves.  The reason for this is that there are a variety of charging units available on the market and this approach allows occupiers to choose the most appropriate unit for them and take advantage of the Government grant, noting that this requires vehicles to be parked on a private driveway, rather than on the road.

If you would like to discuss this further in relation to any of your projects, then please get in touch with us.