Electric vehicle charging devices are allowed as long as they meet the standards of the Zoning Ordinance for a parking space in all respects. The Zoning Ordinance does not distinguish between the types of users allowed in parking spaces. If, through Site Plan approval, a space containing an electric vehicle charging device is designated as exclusively for use by electric cars, it should be created as one of the reserved spaces in the garage or parking lot.
Section 14.3 of the Arlington County Zoning Ordinance regulates the provision of adequate off-street parking for uses allowed under this Ordinance.
For by-right uses (those allowed by the Ordinance without any special exception or use permit), the number of required parking spaces is determined by the Ordinance standards for specific uses. For uses allowed by special exception site plan or use permit, the number of required parking spaces may be determined by the Ordinance or, in some cases, by the County Board (depending upon the specific use).
Arlington County has always been progressive in its commitment towards smart growth and sustainable communities. Electric vehicles produce lower greenhouse gas emissions and much less local air pollution than conventional gasoline-fueled vehicles. Encouraging the provision of electric vehicle charging stations/devices in public and private facilities would be just one aspect of the larger commitment towards reducing emissions and promoting smart transportation.
The Ordinance provides that “for every land use hereafter established, there shall be provided sufficient space for access by, and for the off-street standing and parking of, all motor vehicles that may be expected to come to the establishment at any time under normal conditions for any purpose, whether as patrons, customers, purveyors, guests, employees or otherwise”. The provision of electric vehicle charging devices in existing or future parking spaces should not reduce the number of required parking spaces. Electric vehicle charging station parking spaces that meet the standards of the ordinance for a parking space should count as parking spaces in all respects. The Zoning Ordinance does not distinguish between the types of users allowed in parking spaces. If, through Site Plan approval, a space containing an electric vehicle charging device is designated as exclusively for use by electric cars, it should be created as one of the reserved spaces in the garage or parking lot.
Electric vehicle charging devices may be located adjacent to designated parking spaces in a garage or parking lot as long as the devices do not encroach into the required dimensions of the parking space (length/width/height clearance). Devices must be mounted on the wall or on a structure at the end of the space at least 4.5 feet above the parking surface of the space. No charging devices may be placed within the dimensions of a space on the sides or entrance to a space.
The County Board may decide whether to reduce parking in Site Plan projects and permit reductions in the size of parking spaces to allow for the encroachment of electric vehicle charging devices. For special exception projects that require approval of Parking Management Plans per Site Plan or Use Permit condition, locations of the electric vehicle charging stations and devices and examples of signage that will be used to identify the stations must be shown on the Parking Management Plan. This Plan must be submitted to and approved by the Transportation Division, Department of Environmental Services (DES).
Prior to installing electric vehicle charging stations, an Electrical Permit must be obtained from the Inspection Services Division (ISD), Department of Community Planning, Housing, and Development, either as part of overall building permit or separately.