Tuesday, 13 October 2020

Questions (167)

Cian O'Callaghan

Question:

167. Deputy Cian O'Callaghan asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage if guidelines will be issued on the need for electric car charging points in new estates; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that in some high density estates in which persons do not have driveways charging points and cannot be installed as they create a trip hazard; the retrospective steps that can be taken in such developments; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [29892/20]

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Written answers (Question to Housing)

The EU Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (2018/844/EU) requires Member States to ensure that appropriate infrastructure is installed in all new residential buildings and non-residential buildings, as well as those buildings with more than 10 parking spaces, for the purpose of enabling the installation at a later stage of charging points for electric vehicles (EVs) in such developments. It is intended that this EU requirement will be transposed into Irish law by end 2020.

With regard to existing developments, if a property owner or developer wishes to retrospectively install EV charging points, exemptions from planning permission for such infrastructure are available under Class 29A of the Planning and Development Regulations 2001, as amended (the Regulations). This Class allows for the installation of EV charging points that do not exceed a volume of - (i) 0.5 cubic metres above ground on a public road, and (ii) 3 cubic metres above ground elsewhere.

If a hazard would be created by the installation of an EV charging point so as to endanger public safety by reason of traffic hazard or obstruction of road users, including pedestrians, the planning exemption would be dis-applied under Article 9(1)(a)(iii) of the Regulations and the property owner or developer in question would be required to apply for planning permission.

With regard to the installation of EV charging points on roads, both public and private, this should be undertaken in accordance with the principles contained in the Design Manual for Urban Roads and Streets (DMURS), which was jointly published in 2013 by my Department in association with the Department of Transport. Where the installation of an EV charging point is proposed specifically for public roads, the relevant local authority in its capacity as a Roads Authority under the Roads Act 1993, must be consulted and such installation may also require a road opening licence.

Where a developer or individual is unsure if planning permission is required for a proposed EV charging point, they can apply for a declaration under section 5 of the Planning and Development Act 2000, as amended, where each application is considered by the relevant planning authority on a case-by-case basis.

The technology behind EV charging points is evolving at a fast pace and my Department will keep the matter under review and make necessary legislative amendments or issue updated guidelines as the need arises.