2021 Quick Start Grant Recipients

BlocPower + City of San Luis Obispo


BlocPower and the City of San Luis Obispo will collaborate to retrofit 10-12 affordable multifamily housing units in San Luis Obispo with heat pump water heaters (HPWHs) and air source heat pumps (ASHPs). They will also establish a Green and Healthy Homes Roundtable to engage community members and contribute to the development of a communications plan for electrification efforts.

Market Barrier

The City of San Luis Obispo has ambitious climate goals and a policy requiring all new construction to be all-electric—but retrofitting existing buildings, including multifamily and low-income housing, is an ongoing challenge. New approaches are needed to elevate and socialize electrification in the broader community, develop retrofit project models, and build workforce capacity.

Proposed Solution

BlocPower, in partnership with the City of San Luis Obispo, will complete pilot building electrification (heat pump water heater and heat pump HVAC) retrofits in 10-12 affordable multi-family housing units. A Community Advisory Board (CAB) will also be established that engages and empowers community members to participate in the equitable rollout and implementation of electrification programs within and beyond the City. The project will implement a communications plan to elevate and socialize building electrification in the broader community.

Theory of Change

This project couples both immediate, concrete action with a firm grounding in community engagement to lead to increased awareness among residents, developers, and designers. It aims to be an example for how community-driven project identification and delivery can lead directly to the installation of heat pumps while also creating a broad coalition of support for rapid adoption, increased awareness, and a better-aligned workforce.

Project Status:


Housing Type:

Multifamily deed-restricted affordable housing




San Luis Obispo, CA