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New Apartment Building EV Charging Code Update 2023

23 May 2024

The surge in EV adoption has created an increased need for faster charging solutions beyond the basic Level-1 portable chargers that come with vehicles. These chargers prioritise portability over speed, typically taking 30-40 hours to fully charge a standard EV. While Level-2 fast charging wall boxes, commonly found in homes, offer overnight charging similar to the likes of charging a mobile phone.

With the growing importance of EV infrastructure in apartment buildings, the government has taken steps to address the issue. Recognising that 17% of Australia's housing comprises apartment blocks, the government aims to meet sustainability targets and transition towards having 90% EVs by 2050. A significant move in this direction was made during a Building Ministers Meeting in August 2022, where Federal Minister for Industry and Science Ed Husic rallied federal, state, and territory ministers to amend the national construction code. The amendment mandates that new Class 2 Buildings (apartment blocks or buildings containing two or more sole-occupancy units) must be capable of charging EVs in all parking spots by October 2023.

"Install now to prevent costs later"

Initially met with resistance, the mandate has now been broadened to cover all parking spots in new apartment buildings, rather than just 25% as originally proposed. Husic emphasises the importance of having builders include the capacity to charge electric vehicles in parking bays during the construction phase, citing it as a modest upfront cost that can prevent significant barriers and retrofitting expenses in the future.

Those purchasing apartments built after October 2023 will benefit from this mandate, as their properties will be EV ready. Consultants and builders must adhere to the new National Building Codes to ensure that all new apartment buildings are wired to be "EV charging station ready" from October 2023 onwards. Being "EV ready" involves ensuring that parking spaces include appropriate wiring, covered outlets, and final connection points for EV chargers.

While retrofitting existing buildings with EV infrastructure offers convenience for EV owners, incorporating such infrastructure during the planning and construction phase of new residential and commercial projects is a more cost-effective and practical option.

For inquiries about EV charging systems for apartment buildings, follow this link. Or visit our online commercial EV charging store.

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