Land Development Services

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Regular hours for calls and emails are 8 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and 9:15 a.m. - 4 p.m. on Friday.

703-324-1780
TTY 711

12055 Government Center Pkwy
Fairfax, VA 22035

Bill Hicks,
Director

Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

This publication is for commercial and multi-family Electrical Vehicle Charging Stations (EVCS).  No plans are required for EVCS in single family dwellings however you are required to submit an electrical permit through our FIDO system before installation.

Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

This information is the most common for how to obtain the necessary permits for your project and is not representative of all the conditions you may encounter. For more specific information or questions, contact the Permit Application Center at 703-222-0801, TTY 711.

Types of Electric Vehicles

There are three types of electric vehicles with a common need of power from the utility grid.

CarPlug-in hybrid electric vehicles, similar to conventional hybrids, have batteries with a 10- to 40-mile range, which, when exceeded, are powered by a gas engine.

CarExtended range electric vehicles are fully driven by an electric motor which is initially powered by a battery, but after its 238-mile range is exhausted, it is powered by a generator run by a gasoline engine.

CarBattery electric vehicles are driven entirely by a battery-powered electric motor with a range up to 220 miles.

Types of EVCS

There are three types of EVSC equipment available for residential and/or commercial use.

ChargeA Level 1 charging system can be plugged into most grounded electrical outlets, is usually rated for 15 amperes at 120 volts common and takes up to 12 hours to charge a vehicle.

ChargeA Level 2 charging system requires a dedicated 240-volt circuit and takes between four and six hours to charge a vehicle.

ChargeA Level 3 charging system is used in commercial applications, is hardwire per the manufacturer and takes less than an hour to charge a vehicle.

PERMITS & FEES

An electric vehicle charging station (EVCS) is an appliance that supplies energy to recharge electric vehicle batteries. The types of permits required, as listed below, may be required depending on the size and complexity of your EVCS.

  • Electrical permit for new circuits and outlets (no permit is required if you are plugging a stand-alone charging station into an existing outlet).
  • New Commercial Building permit for commercial charging stations with an overhead canopy or other type of structure.
  • Sign permit for commercial charging stations with advertising signs.
  • There are also applicable Zoning Provisions for electric vehicle charging stations.  Please review the EVC memorandum and checklist for more information.

Who should apply for the permit?

If you are performing the work yourself, property owners may obtain permits in their own name. If you are hiring a contractor, however, the building code requires the contractor to be listed on your permit as the responsible party. By listing your contractor on the permit, county staff can verify that they are properly licensed for the work being performed. Additionally, when a licensed contractor is listed on the permit the county is better able to assist in gaining compliance for defective work.

DOCUMENTS REQUIRED

For EVCS in single family dwellings, no plan submission is required. You will only be required to submit an electrical permit through the FIDO system.

When applying for a permit online for commercial and multi-family properties, you must upload electrical plans, building plans for any structures, such as canopies, site-related plans, a Property Ownership Affidavit (when property ownership must be verified) and a Permit Authorization Form (when the applicant is neither the owner nor a contractor).

In addition, please review the EVC memorandum and checklist for more information.

IS A SITE-RELATED PLAN REQUIRED?

Many installations of commercial EVCS (structures that disturb more than 250 and less than 2500 square feet) can be performed under a minor site plan. For a complete review of site plan submission requirements, please see the Application for Minor Site Plan and Site Related Plans.

Permit Process

Follow the steps below to obtain the necessary approvals and permits for your EVCS.

Vienna and Clifton residents require additional approvals from their respective towns.

 

Step 1) Permit Application

Obtain permits online using FIDO. If you are a first-time user, you must first follow the prompts to create an account. Once you are logged into FIDO, apply for a new commercial building permit if required and an electrical permit. Additional steps are required for your ePlan upload process. Once the application is complete, you will be invited by email to upload your required documents to ProjectDox for submission to the county.

Step 2) Fees

Fees vary depending on the scope of your project; use the online fee estimator to help determine your costs.

Step 3) County Review

County staff from the Permit Application Center, Building Plan Review, Site Review and Zoning will review your package for completeness and compliance with the building code and county ordinances. You will be notified of any deficiencies. Plan corrections, resubmission fees and additional supporting documents may be required. 

Step 4) Permit Issuance

Once all county reviews are approved and outstanding fees have been paid, you can access your approved plans in ProjectDox (if applicable) and permit in FIDO. The permit for the construction of any structures and the installation of the electrical components must be printed and posted at the job site; the approved plans must be also printed in full size and available on the job site for the duration of the project.

INSPECTIONS

  • You must notify the county when construction on your project reaches a stage that requires inspection. 
  • Schedule, cancel or modify an inspection online through FIDO or use the Fairfax County smartphone app available for Android and iOS.
  • The county approved site-related plan and building plans must be available on the jobsite.
  • Any special equipment necessary to perform the inspection, such as ladders, scaffolding or testing equipment, must be on site.

For more information on inspection procedures, visit the inspections operational status page.

Fairfax Virtual Assistant