Minister of Housing, Lands, Urban and Rural Development, Michael Lashley, looking at plans for a joint UDC/NHC housing project to be built at??Haggat Hall, St. Michael,last Friday.??He is??joined by (r-l) Acting General Manager at the NHC, Lanette Napoleon-Young; Minister of State with repsonsibility for Urban and Rural Development,??Patrick Todd;??(in cream??shirt) Assistant Director of the UDC, Ewald Mullin; and other UDC staff.

Work will soon begin on two National Housing Corporation (NHC) projects at Haggatt Hall, St. Michael and Woodbourne, St. Philip.

This disclosure came last Friday from Minister of Housing, Lands, Urban and Rural Development, Michael Lashley, who said that the two sites would provide an additional 40 homes.??

He pointed out during the extensive tour, that the project at Haggatt Hall would mark the beginning of a collaborative approach of the Ministry and its new sister agencies, the Urban Development Commission (UDC) and the Rural Development Commission (RDC).??

The Minister stated that the NHC would soon "go out to tender" for the infrastructural works and the building of the houses.??

"We currently have Town Planning permission for 12 quadruplex units; however, the area can accommodate some 20 units… The units will be for relocating some priority cases who are living in deplorable conditions, and also for persons who need housing, who apply to the NHC.?? It will be a small area in terms of density but it is a start in terms of building that relationship with the UDC and NHC," Mr. Lashley explained.

Meanwhile, Acting General Manager of the NHC, Lanette Napoleon-Young, noted that the development of land at Woodbourne, St. Philip marked the utilisation of the $5 per square foot and the Starter Homes programmes of the Housing Ministry.??

She revealed that permission to construct four houses at Woodbourne had been obtained, and an application was in train to develop the remainder of the 3900 square metres of land, which is expected to eventually accommodate 20 to 21 houses.??

"We are currently clearing the area to build four houses of 595 square feet – two wooden and two wall.?? This is part of the starter housing concept, where we will be providing a two-bedroom space for persons to occupy.?? We will provide a finished bathroom and bedroom but leave the other area for the persons to complete the houses as resources become available.?? This is an effort to capture that group that can borrow between 90,000 and 125,000 [dollars] in order to purchase a home.?? There will be heightened activity from this week as NHC workers begin construction," Mrs. Napoleon-Young disclosed.

The starter homes policy will also be utilised at Parish Land, St. Philip, has been designed to give low-income earners who work for less than $3000 monthly.?? This is an opportunity for Barbadians to purchase a house costing between $70,000 and $100,000, with the expectation that improvements would be made to these properties over time, based on the financial circumstances of purchasers.

Minister Lashley was at the time touring the UDC, on Roebuck street, homes in need of repair in the urban and rural corridors, and the RDC in Speightstown, where members of staff were formally introduced to Mr. Lashley and Minister of State, Patrick Todd.?? He was also accompanied by the NHC’s senior management team. lbayley@barbados.gov.bb

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