Council Hears Bill to Add Electric Vehicle Charging Stations in Open Garages and Lots

Mayor Adams and City officials charge one of the City’s new electric vehicles that were added to the City fleet in January 2023. A City Council bill could lead to more charging stations like this one in open garages and lots citywide. Image Credit: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office.

On January 24, 2023, the New York City Council Committee on Housing and Buildings held a public hearing on Introduction 150-2022. The bill, sponsored by Council Member Justin Brannan from Brooklyn, creates requirements for electric vehicle charging stations in open lots and garages.

The bill mandates that by 2030, 40 percent of all parking spaces in existing garages and open lots with ten or more parking spaces be capable of supporting electric vehicle charging stations and have 10 percent of those spots actually be equipped as electric vehicle charging stations. The bill also requires new garages and lots to have 60 percent of all parking spaces to be capable of supporting charging stations and 20 percent of those spots to be equipped as electric vehicle charging stations.

Guillermo Patino, Deputy Commissioner for External Affairs at the New York City Department of Buildings testified in support of the bill and expressed optimism about the bill helping to achieve the City’s goal of carbon neutrality by 2050.

Alia Soomro, Deputy Director of New York City Policy, New York League of Conservation Voters supported the implementation of the legislation and was optimistic about the bill expanding the current electric vehicle charging infrastructure to other parts of New York City, citing that a majority of the City’s public charging stations are located in Manhattan. More community members also expressed support for the bill due to its efforts to combat climate change.

Other community members supported the bill but had certain reservations.

Lori Raphael, a representative for the Building Owners & Managers Association of Greater New York submitted testimony broadly support the bill’s efforts to combat climate change but urged the Council to amend the legislation to apply only to new parking garages and lots. Raphael indicated concerns about the current electrical grid potentially not being able to handle the updates necessitated by the bill if all new and existing garages and lots are required to have electric vehicle charging stations. Similarly, Raphael suggested the legislation be drafted to be more in-line with New York state regulations to ensure there are not unnecessary duplicate state and city regulations for parking garages and lot owners to follow that achieve the same goals.

Council Member Alexa Aviles from Brooklyn also expressed the need to include e-bike charging infrastructure into the broader planned electric vehicle charging stations.

Int. 150-2022 currently remains laid over in committee.

By: Vanessa Cameron (Vanessa is a CityLaw intern and a New York Law School student, Class of 2024.)




2 thoughts on “Council Hears Bill to Add Electric Vehicle Charging Stations in Open Garages and Lots

  1. While I appreciate the intent of this bill for EV charging stations in parking garages and lots for the environment, I do have an issue with the fire risk involved.
    The 2023 New York City Fire Code has specific requirements for charging stations and storage areas for EV’s.
    Would these be incorporated into this proposal?
    I say this because I have lived in and around New York City all my life, and believe that we should pay for something once, not continually pay to upgrade things after they are built.
    Thank you for the opportunity to comment,
    Charles R. Von Dietsch Jr.

  2. More consideration has to be given to the safety of charging 100s of cars in a limited garage space that may only be served by parking attendants, especially if e-bikes are included, with their known propensity to catch fire/explode.
    This could be catastrophic in an enclosed space with other cars.
    No one expects garages to fill cars with gasoline in garages. The same caution should be used for EVs.

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