We’d provide some grounding in the general work we do (providing affordable housing acquisition, acquisition/rehab and homebuyer loans), but have a specific research and surveying project in mind.
As part of the City’s recent Equitable Climate Action Plan to reduce the harmful impacts of gas-powered utilities on climate and community health, the City Council set an ambitious goal of converting all existing buildings in the City to electric power by the year 2040 (https://www.oaklandca.gov/projects/building-electrification
This includes our portfolio of ~125 properties with affordable housing restrictions. Some of which have already recently been rehabbed. Many of which are older, and have asbestos/lead paint disturbance potential and/or would require temporary relocation of existing residents to complete this work. When we have an affordable housing crisis of epic proportions in which we also need to be creating/acquiring new affordable housing units, with limited funds for all of the above.
We’ve done some work with our portfolio of properties to try to get a sense of the scope of the situation, and some initial sessions with our colleagues in the City’s Environmental Services Division of Public Works.
But we’d love to engage an enthusiastic intern to help us with some of the following:
– complete survey of potentially impacted units on a property by property basis
– research and collection of best practices in other Cities conducting electrification of existing multi-family residential units
– research on potential range of costs for building electrification (including temporary relocation costs and best practices for mitigating impact on existing residents)
– liaison with Environmental Services and property owners to discuss findings and recommendations, and seek input/feedback on these
– develop potential schedule/funding and review of City’s existing Rehabilitation Notice of Funding Availability to suggest modifications needed to account for the electrification work
Practical considerations: unfortunately, we cannot offer a housing stipend for an intern, and it is an understatement to say that housing in the Bay Area is very expensive. In addition, I am planning to take a mini-sabbatical in June (partially hoping that I’ll be able to attend my own 25th reunion, as well as visiting family on the East Coast). However, my colleague Christina Mun (cc’d here) would be available to supervise the intern, as well as staff from our division.
I think that a longer internship would be ideal (because the tasks above are already probably more than a 10 week internship’s worth of work, but if someone couldn’t work the entire summer, we could figure out some sub-section of the above work that would both make for a meaningful internship, and be of tremendous assistance to the City’s team (and affordable housing property owners and residents).
We are currently working almost fully remotely, though occasionally coming in to handle documents. I do not know whether we will be in person or remote come the summertime. However, if we are in the office, we will likely be there on a rotating basis with other HCD teams.