With the UK’s net zero carbon target date creeping closer, the Government are continuing to publish amendments to building regulations allowing for positive ESG-led change within the real estate industry. One of the most recently announced additions to the regulations, due to come into force in June this year, is Part S, which revolves around supporting the Government’s push towards the uptake of electric vehicles and sets out the infrastructure needed to back consumers in doing this.

With a general move away from petrol and diesel vehicles, the regulations should help building owners to future proof their portfolios whilst being part of the movement to reduce carbon production in the property landscape. Part S follows other Building Regulation amendments announced in late 2021 which also aim to increase energy efficiency of buildings across England, including Part L which sets out standards for energy performance. More about Part L can be found here.

Whilst the changes set out in Part S are part of a positive movement, they do have the possibility of causing major cost implications for property owners, developers and investors. It‘s important for building owners to be aware of the new requirements and changes they’ll need to make to their assets to meet them, and also the potential cost increases caused by doing so.

The EV charging and infrastructure requirements set out in Part S apply to all residential and non-residential buildings, mixed-use buildings, and buildings undergoing a material change of use; all of which can be applied to new builds or buildings undergoing major renovation. In these guidelines, work to existing non-residential buildings is counted as any building where more than 25% of the surface envelope is undergoing renovation.

Focusing on non-residential and mixed-use buildings, the legislation concludes that any building with more than ten associated parking spaces will need to ensure;

  • at least one parking space has access to an electric vehicle charging point; and
  • cable routes are installed to a minimum of 20% of the remaining spaces to allow for charging points to be installed at a later date.

This is in the hopes of providing lasting infrastructure which will support the rising future uptake of electric vehicles onto our roads.

Exceptions start to appear when you look at the costs of implementing this new infrastructure to major renovation work you are undertaking. If installing the EV charge points will exceed 7% of your total renovation costs, then the building is exempt from installing any charge points. This doesn’t extend to cable routes however, where 20% of the total parking spaces must have cable routes installed for EV charge points. By having the potential to install these later, you can be sure that your assets will be able to withstand the forecasted EV growth.

All legislation mentioned above comes into force on 15th June 2022 for use in England, with exception of work subjected to a building notice, full plans application or initial notice submitted before this date.

If you would like any advice on navigating the changes and implications of Part S, please get in touch with our expert Carl Sablon who will be able to guide you through the upcoming changes.