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Proposed law aims to make new homes EV-friendly

Palo Alto officials recommend adopting a requirement for electric-vehicle circuitry for new residential buildings

by Gennady Sheyner / Palo Alto Weekly

Seeking to remain in the driver’s seat of the electric-vehicle revolution, Palo Alto officials on Tuesday enthusiastically backed a new law that will force home builders to go along for the ride.

In a unanimous vote, the City Council’s Policy and Services Committee recommended that the council adopt a new requirement that new buildings be wired for charging stations. The required circuitry would have to be able to accommodate, at minimum, one 50-ampere, Level-2, charger.

The Tuesday vote came in response to a September colleague’s memo from Mayor Greg Scharff, Vice Mayor Nancy Shepherd and Councilwoman Gail Price, who lauded the new requirement as a way to further bolster the city’s position as leader in the quickly emerging field of electric vehicles and a champion of environmental sustainability. The city is home to Tesla Motors and its streets are dominated by Prius hybrids and a wide assortment of newer electric-vehicle models. Over the past year, the city has installed car chargers at several public garages and has been requiring large new commercial developments to do the same.
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