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A Growing Number of Communities Are Telling Developers to Make Their Buildings Electric

image credit: Adobe/Gensler

A couple of interesting pieces of news about the movement to make new construction all-electric came out of New York last week.

The New York Times ran an article about the movement, leading with Berkeley, Calif., last July becoming the first city to ban natural gas hookups in new construction and then saying the effort has spread to the point that major cities, including Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle "are in various stages of considering pro-electric legislation."

Meanwhile, Bill de Blasio, the mayor of the Times' home city, said in his State-of-the-City Address that he wants to end the use of natural gas and other fossil fuels in large building systems in New York by 2040.

How could the building electrification trend affect electric utilities? An ACEEE blog post from September 2018 said three studies that were recent at the time concluded it was likely to boost their overall demand and could flip the peak demands periods of some from summer to winter.

The Times article noted that there is some pushback to the effort, but also noted three large all-electric projects in the works: an 18-story office building that Adobe is constructing at its San Jose, Calif., headquarters (pictured above); a 38-story building that Alloy Development is constructing as part of a mixed-use project in Brooklyn; and Sidewalk Toronto, which the paper called "a massive development under review" that was proposed by Alphabet's Sidewalk Labs and the public agency Waterfront Toronto.





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