Chicago Passes Electrical Vehicle Supply Equipment Ready Ordinance

The city council of Chicago, IL recently passed an ordinance strengthening the requirements for newly constructed residential and commercial buildings to be electric vehicle ready. The Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment-Ready (EVSE-Ready) ordinance updates the city’s municipal code to increase the number of private parking spaces equipped with EV-charging capacity.

“As the cost of EVs decline and concerns about the fallout from climate change escalate, analysts have forecasted exponential growth in EVs over the next two decades, and Chicago must be ready,” said 42nd Ward Ald. Brendan Reilly, the chief sponsor of the measure.  “Readiness starts with ensuring our municipal code anticipates the need for charging resources and other assets that will optimize the performance of our transportation network and minimize costs for electricity consumers, as EVs proliferate.”

Under previous city requirements, all new residential construction consisting of at least 24 units was required to reserve no fewer than two parking spaces for EVs. The new ordinance changes this to require new residential construction consisting of at least five units to reserve no less than 20 percent of parking spaces for EVs. Commercial properties with 50 or more on-site parking spaces were required to designate at least two slots for EV but now commercial properties with at least 30 on-site parking spaces would have to allocate at least 20 percent to EVs.

“This is a giant step forward for Chicago, and it’s the kind of wise EV policy we need across Illinois,” The Citizens Utility Board (CUB) executive director David Kolata said. “This is a perfect example of how clean energy policy reduces consumer costs. As a consumer advocacy group, we like this policy because it’s good for the pocketbook and the planet. We thank Mayor Lori Lightfoot and the City Council for having the foresight to pass this pro-consumer measure.”

The new ordinance takes effect in the fall.