If you are on the board of a condominium building, you may know that in July of 2021 there was a change to the statute regarding the installation of electric vehicle charging stations. The updated statute no longer considers installation of EV charging stations in condominiums as a material alteration and therefore no longer requires a vote of the community. This statute change prompted the board of directors at Seagate Towers to take advantage of the opportunity and begin planning installation of EV charging stations.
Seagate Towers is a two-tower high rise condominium located on the intracoastal in Delray Beach. The board at Seagate Towers felt that adding this amenity would satisfy many owners, as well as potentially increase property values at the property. The community also had an upcoming parking lot pavement project, meaning that they could coordinate the charging station installation and parking projects together.
The first step of installing the EV charging stations was to find the right vendor. After considering various companies, the board of directors chose ChargePoint. A representative of ChargePoint then came to the community, discussed the installation process, cost to the community, accessibility, and provided the information needed to the board and their selected electrician. Next, the board contacted an electrician who is familiar with EV charging station installation. The electrician also came to the community, helped determine if there was room on the electrical panels to add charging stations, and helped determine the best location for the charging stations.
Since the board also had a parking lot pavement project to complete, the board instructed the paving contractor to lay the conduit, which was later used to run the electric to the charging stations. Once the conduit was laid and the permits were received, the charging station installation began. The electrician installed the electric from the panel to the location of the charging stations and installed the concrete pad necessary to bolt the stations down to withstand hurricane force winds. In the end, the board decided to prepare the space for four electric charging spots, even though they only installed two at the present time.
Once all was installed and ready to go, ChargePoint sent the board all the set-up instructions, contact information, and exclusive community code. The specific code provided permits only the residents at Seagate Towers to use the charging stations, as well as friends or guests if desired. The charging stations are user friendly for resident use. Users pay with their credit cards (approximately 21 cents per KW/hr) and utilize the ChargePoint app to track the status of their vehicle charging. The community leases the equipment from ChargePoint and shares the revenue with the company.
The charging stations went live in mid-May but have not had a lot of use since it is still the off season. However, the board expects more usage later in the year and into the near future, as the popularity and affordability of electric vehicles increases alongside the increasing price of gasoline.