Govt. eyes Sh2.6m low cost houses in new housing project

The State Department of Housing and Urban Development has reached out to international developers to partner with in the construction of 8,000 houses on a pilot scheme.

The project is part of a wider plan to construct at least 1 million low cost houses by the government on government owned land.

The pilot project will see the houses constructed on 55 acres of land in Mavoko, Machakos County with the government keen to tap funds from the cooperative movement for the project.

Housing and Urban Development Principal Secretary Arch. Aidah Munano said the affordable housing target aims to uplift the housing standards of Kenyans in light of rapid urbanization.

“This affordable housing is within the cooperative movement and pension funds and we are interrogating all of this and other innovative ways of realizing affordable funding. Then we also have to look for affordable land because if we start building in land which is very expensive these houses will not be available for our low income people,” Arch. Munano said.

The entire project is estimated to cost Sh21 billion which translates to approximately Sh2.6 million per house once complete.

The developer will be handed an Engineering Procurement Contract and will be expected to adopt modern building techniques and technology to ensure the costs remain low.

Already the government has tapped into the potential of the cooperative movement to expedite the low cost houses for the masses.

State Department of Co-operative Development principal secretary Ali Noor concurred with the move adding it was prudent for the government to tap the local market.

“Cooperative movement has more than fourteen million members, more than twenty two thousand cooperatives, with assets in excess of Sh800 billion and savings in excess of Sh600 billion which can be channeled to the housing sector,” Mr Noor said.

Kenya has a backlog of 1.85 million housing units with the government tasked with constructing 200,000 houses each year to cater for the shortfall.

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