Jan 25, 2016 News
…switches focus to community consolidation in 2016
With approximately 25,000 house lot applications still to be processed, the Housing Ministry recently revealed at a press conference hosted by the Central Planning and Housing Authority (CH&PA) that 251 house lots were allocated between June to December 2015.
During this period, 28 Turn-key houses were also completed.
Chief Development Planner (CDP), Rawle Edinboro, stated that the Turn-Key initiative will need to be expanded because of the response from homeowners about the “problems” they are being faced with contractors and the unavailability of materials.
200 Turn-Key homes are pegged to be completed in 2016.
Twelve community development plans were also completed in 2015, which he said, had set the stage for local communities to define projects that are important to their “unique scenarios”.
Edinboro said that this was a major shift from what the authority had done before.
“…Prior to 2010… The focus was heavily on infrastructural provision; building roads, doing the drains but we ignored the softer aspects of community development where people could be allowed the golden opportunity to craft and prioritise their own community development agenda.”
Hence, the authority’s objective in 2016 will be to focus heavily on the idea of community consolidation.
Edinboro continued that the authority’s Infrastructural Provision Programme – Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) funded programme– was successful, and at the end of 2015, they had provided services to approximately 8467 lots.
These services included the construction of septic tanks. This particular initiative he said was to capture the health component as was specified under the foreign-funded programme and the aim of getting homeowners to raise the level of public health awareness.
By the end of last year, 285 septic tanks were completed.
They also addressed, under the IDB-funded programme, the issue of training and capacity building, Edinboro pointed out.
“…Recognising that we have to re-tool and equip officers to deal with an ever growing demand in terms of the skills and competencies that the work requires.”
Officers were trained in engineering, evaluation, management, legal education, accounting and urban development.
There was “major success” in terms of land titles, he said, which was important in assisting persons to get mortgages. At the close of last year, 4434 titles were distributed to beneficiaries. Titles were distributed through the Squatters’ Regularisation Programme.
The government-funded programme was primarily targeted towards infrastructural upgrade, such as the development of roads; to asphaltic concrete surfaces. Works were conducted in Regions Two, Three, Four, Five and Six, the CH&PA stated.
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