Recent articles in the Toronto Star have reported on issues that condo residents face if they choose to have electric cars. Most condominiums have not been designed to allow for electric outlets in parking spaces, although some of the newer developments are now incorporating those outlets into their initial design plans.
It is not only those electric car owners who face those difficulties of finding where to charge their vehicles, it is also residents who may require the use of a motorized scooter who are challenged with trying to find a place to park them and also locating a place to plug them in.
With motorized scooters now more prevalant and as the aging population continues to move into condominium communities, boards should be thinking about ways assist residents with electric vehicles.
In a recent article in the Toronto Star Peter Gorrie suggests that just like providing coin-operating washing machines and dryers in apartment buildings and some condominiums, why not copy that model to provide charging stations for electric vehicles?
One of the suggestions Peter has is collecting a monthly fee for each station on a user paid fee basis. The amount paid would include the costs of the electricity charges and maintenance. This could be structured similar to arrangements where condominium corporations lease or license the use of bike racks, lockers or parking spaces.
Corporations will have to consider the upfront costs of creating these charging stations and determine when those costs would be recouped through the user fee paid arrangement. Depending upon the interest of the owners and residents in the building, it may or may not be a worthwhile endeavour. In addition, there may be certain steps that the board will have to take under Section 97 of the Condominium Act with respect to alterations to the common elements, which may include a vote of the owners.