Climate Change SPD

Ended on the 4 October 2023

Chapter 7: Electric Vehicles

The guidance in this chapter is taken from the Essex Design Guide. Further guidance on electric vehicle charging is expected in the emerging Parking Standards guidance document.

A ban on the sale of diesel and petrol cars and vans is expected to come into force in 2030, so it is important to ensure drivers can easily switch to other modes or where this is not conveniently feasible and make use of alternative fuel vehicles.

Electric vehicles are propelled by an electric motor powered using energy stored in internal batteries. Plug-in electric vehicle batteries are recharged by plugging them into the power grid.

The support and use of electric vehicles in residential developments provides a number of benefits and layouts should therefore give consideration to how charging infrastructure can be integrated:

  • Decreased air pollution in the vicinity due to the lack of exhaust emissions.
  • Decreased noise pollution.
  • Opportunity to provide ancillary services to the local power grid, enabling the use of higher share of variable renewable energy and potentially avoiding costly grid reinforcements.

To successfully achieve EV parking and charging for terrace housing, ducting changes should be incorporated into the public realm from the outset.

Types of Chargepoint

There are three types of charging equipment, each with an associated charging time and typical application. The table below is included in the Essex Design Guide and whilst homeowners can use a normal 3-pin plug to charge EVs, the Council recommends that a home charging unit is installed.

Type of chargepoint

Typical power output

Typical charging time

Typical application


7kW minimum

4-7 hours

Residential, workplace



2-4 hours

Retail, leisure, public



30-45 minutes

Public, fleet, strategic highway network

The majority of charging currently occurs at home, usually overnight when electricity is cheapest. For residential developments the standard 3-7kW chargepoints are sufficient to provide a full charge overnight. The same chargepoints are suitable for employee parking spaces where cars would typically be parked during office working hours.

Fast chargepoints are suitable for public and retail car parks, leisure centres, visitor car parks and other amenities where drivers can top-up their battery while visiting the location for other reasons.

Rapid chargepoints can provide up to 80% power in about 30 minutes, and are best suited for transport hubs (for example, airports, taxi ranks etc.), electric vehicle (EV) charging hubs and along the strategic highway network, where a quick charge is essential.

Number of Chargepoints

For housing developments with garages and/or dedicated off-street parking, each new dwelling should be fitted with a standard (3-7kW) chargepoint.

For housing developments with no off-street parking, 10% of the unallocated parking bays should have an active (i.e. wired and ready to use) chargepoint. A further 10% should have the necessary underlying infrastructure (i.e. cabling and ducting) to enable quick, simple installation at a later date when there is sufficient demand.

For instructions on how to use the system and make comments, please see our help guide.
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