Development Permits: Climate Action Plan

In November 2022, the Dublin City Council voted to adopt an all-electric new construction reach code and electric vehicle charging station ordinance to achieve greenhouse gas emissions reduction goals set forth in the City of Dublin's Climate Action Plan 2030 and Beyond (CAP 2030). The codes go into effect on January 1, 2023.

All Electric New Construction Reach Code

Project applicants that have submitted building permits by December 29, 2022, do not need to adhere to the new standards set forth by the all-electric new construction reach code, as long as the permit is approved within one year and the project is constructed within two years of permit issuance. 

  • The new building code requires new buildings to be built using electricity only. No natural gas plumbing is permitted for any end use.
  • Exemptions have been provided for commercial kitchen-specific end uses (stoves, ovens, etc.) as well as an infeasibility waiver for technologically infeasible projects. Applicants are required to apply for either exemption.

Electric Vehicle Charging Station Ordinance

The City of Dublin has adopted Tier 2 CALGreen requirements for the electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure code. Project applicants that have submitted building permits by December 29, 2022, do not need to adhere to the new standards set forth by the new EV infrastructure code below, as long as the permit is approved within one year and the project is constructed within two years of permit issuance. 

  • New multi-family residential properties must have 40% of stalls be EV Ready and 15% of stalls equipped with Level 2 chargers. These requirements are additive; multi-family residential properties must have 55% of parking stalls equipped with the required level of EV infrastructure. 
  • New commercial properties must have 45% EV Capable spaces, and at least 15% of the total spaces be Level 2 chargers. The requirements for commercial properties are not additive. 
  • All new construction single family garages will need to be EV Ready.
  • Warehouses, grocery, and retail stores must install transformers that can serve future DC Fast Chargers. 
  • There is a retrofit criteria for multi-family housing that will be triggered if adding stalls or altering lighting or electrical systems in parking lots. Ten percent (10%) of altered spots must be EV Capable.

Public Information Sessions on All-Electric New Construction and Electric Vehicle Charger Reach Codes

The City of Dublin hosted two Zoom meetings to provide information on potential Reach Codes that were presented to City Council in November as part of the 2022 Building Code update. The webinar recording about the all-electric new construction reach code and mandatory adoption of CALGreen Tier 2 for electric vehicle charging station infrastructure is below.

Question & Answers

The questions and answers from the two public information sessions are summarized below. If you would like the full transcript, please watch the video above.

Session 1

Question 1: In communities where gas is already installed, will the existing gas need to be removed?

Answer: Existing gas infrastructure will not need to be removed. Best practice is to retire the pipeline in place. Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) will not require removal of the gas infrastructure unless a jurisdiction requires removal. Dublin will not require removal of existing gas infrastructure as part of this Building Code. The all-electric Building Code is for new construction only.

Question 2: How do you account for the fact that EV chargers take up physical space on a site plan that may not fit on a site that was previously approved to be EV-ready?

Answer: The idea behind EV-ready in the code is that a project site is set up to be able to add EV chargers some time in the future. Therefore, an applicant should be planning for future installation, including the space for the future chargers. There are a variety of different charging stations available with different footprints so there should be options that will suit any situation.

Question 3: How is the City interpreting code sections between single-family/townhouses with private garages and R2 occupancy condos with private garages?

Answer: If the unit has a private garage, then it will fall under the single-family requirement. If it is general parking, such as in a standard apartment complex, it would fall under Section 2 because it is basically a parking lot. The determination is not based on occupancy, it is based on the garages.

Question 4: If an applicant submits permit applications by December 29 at 4:00 pm (the last day of 2022 that the City will accept permit applications), how long does the applicant have to pull the permit before the application expires and the new Building Codes must be followed?

Answer: Permit applications are valid for six months after the time the applicant receives comments from the City. If an action is taken before the end of that six-month period, then that triggers another six-month period, for a total of one year. 

Session 2

Question 1: Is there a specific formula or capacity of solar that is going to be required? How much battery storage is required, if any?

Answer: The City is not adjusting anything from the 2022 Energy Code regarding solar and battery storage requirements.

Question 2: If we have a project with six units under a master plan and an additional 17 units in another neighborhood, does that count as below or above the 20-unit threshold?

Answer: It would be above the 20-unit threshold because there are more than 20 units in one project.