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City to create public parking spots for charging electric vehicles

Challenges include ensuring gas vehicles don't take the space, and EV drivers don't stay there all day
20170516 electric car ts
Greater Sudbury is looking at creating dedicated parking spaces, like this one in Guelph, where electric vehicle drivers can recharge their batteries. Gasoline vehicles would not be allowed to use the spaces, and EV drivers would be limited to four hours.(Tony Saxon / GuelphToday)

With the growing popularity of electric and hybrid vehicles, Greater Sudbury is looking at creating dedicated parking spaces where drivers can recharge their batteries.

A report headed to the operations committee Monday says dedicated charging spots for EVs will include both private and public parking lots.

“With the rise in popularity of electric powered vehicles, electric vehicle charging stations on both public and private property have become more common,” a staff report on the plan says. “Currently, there is no bylaw in the City of Greater Sudbury which restricts the use of parking spaces with EV charging stations to electric vehicles only or limits the amount of time an electric vehicle can be parked in these spaces.”

Other communities have already brought in bylaws designed to ensure they are only used by EV drivers, and that the vehicle doesn't stay in the spot for an extended period.

“The approach other municipalities have taken to correct this problem has been to designate the parking spaces in front of EV charging stations to only allow electric vehicles to park in the space,” the report says. “They also have placed a four-hour time restriction on electric vehicles parked in the spaces and require the electric vehicle to be actively connected to the charger while in the parking space.”

No EV charging stations exist on city property, but they have been installed in private parking lots and spaces in Greater Sudbury, including shopping centres, hotels, gas stations and at Science North.

“As vehicle propulsion trends towards electric power, more of these charging stations will be constructed in coming years and having a bylaw in place to regulate these spaces will be critical,” the report says.

Anyone who breaks the bylaw will get a $25 ticket, the report says, similar to fines for parking at an expired parking meter. Special EV parking space signs will be developed, which the owner of private parking lots will have the option to use, or they can opt out.

Read the full report here.