Housing, What Next For The Prototype?
Espat's CEO said he would provide us with a full list of the contract
at the start of the new fiscal year in April.
In other news from that Ministry, The Housing department is in the
process of fulfilling their mandate to build 10,000 houses for first
time homeowners. And while Minister Julius Espat said they probably
won't meet that quote in five years, they are hoping to get as close as
possible. And while they're started on a prototype, Espat explained
that that is only the base model. He also explained three different
ways they will aim to reach their end goal.
Hon. Julius Espat - Minister of Infrastructure, Housing, and
"The initial design was done pre-election, it was a concept, we like to
call it the transformer house where it starts from a single model as you're
seeing there and it expands as your income increases you can start adding
bedrooms to it."
"So that model I'm seeing there?"
Hon. Julius Espat
"That is the base model and that model is just one room with a bathroom and
it's large enough that it can be used as bedroom in the meantime. The
second phase is that you add on one bedroom, two bedroom, three bedroom,
making it a middle class three bedroom house at the end of the day and the
concept is that you grow as your income increases. There are three ways of
achieving the end goal. One is the low income houses that we consider to be
the social program which I think would be a majority grant and a small
portion financed by a lending institution at very reasonable rates. The
second tier going towards achieving this is a private/public partnership,
similar to what we did today with the road work in Hopkins. This
private/public partnerships is that we would be looking at developers that
have land for example a fifty acres or a 100 acre that wants to do a
"We're showing the picture of the PPP today in Hopkins."
Hon. Julius Espat
"And so we would go into a relationship with them where government would
assist with giving materials at an affordable price by through duty free
for the materials itself we are looking at sitting with the lending
institution, national bank, DFC along with the developers to see if we can
get a rate that's affordable and we're looking at pre fabrication for these
developers so that the cost of the house becomes less because you're
building in mass and then the third phase of construction is strictly
private sector. What we're not trying to do is to compete with the private
sector in the housing market. You have to understand this is low cost
housing and so the third stage of housing is the private sector on its own
and we would facilitate the approval of plans, we would facilitate maybe
sitting down with lending institution to see if they can get better rates,
and we would look at other options so that the private sector can thrive in
the construction industry."