2010 to be declared “Year for Affordable Housing”

January 21st, 2009 - 7:18 pm ICT by ANI  

New Delhi, Jan.21 (ANI): The National Conference of Ministers of Housing, Urban Development and Municipal Administration has recommended that 2010 be declared as the “Year for Affordable Housing”.
The other eleven recommendations of the conference, which met on Tuesday are:
1.State specific policy focusing on Affordable Housing with supporting action plans for augmenting supply of land at affordable prices should be developed.
2.States to draw up the road map and a vision for Slum Free City.
3.Banks to make reservation of at least 1% of their priority sector lending funds for EWS housing
4.Review of existing legal and regulatory framework for acquiring/bringing-in additional lands into the market. Secure land tenure may be extended to families living in slums. Further, Vertical/multi-storeyed construction for in-situ slum re-developments be adopted by persuading the community to avoid long distance relocation
5.Modify state enactments and city level master plans for upward revision of FAR/FSI to accommodate land allocation for EWS and LIG. The investment in infrastructure should be commensurate with the revision of FAR and FSI.
6.Land at institutional rates to be made available for low income housing to cooperative housing societies and employee Welfare organizations to those with a good track record.
7.Private developers ready to undertake construction of affordable housing in partnership or in a JV with the state may be involved.
8.Institutional mechanisms to compile regularly data on housing starts and completions be established.
9.Steps may be taken to create a healthy rental market
10.Easy availability of housing finance at concessional rates
11.Strengthen and enlarge Housing Micro-finance
Kumari Selja, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation inaugurated the conference.
She highlighted that growth of large cities is accompanied by an upsurge in urban poverty where in absence of basic services, secure tenure and formal employment opportunities, settlements of the poor become slums with health and environmental concerns.
Referring to the Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM), she said it is addressing the issue of facilitation of basic services for such settlement along with housing.
The Interest Subsidy Scheme for Housing the Urban Poor (ISHUP) is also likely to address the issue of availability of institutional finance to these people,she added.
She requested the State Governments to supplement the efforts of Union Government in creation of additional housing stock by increasing supply of serviced land and new houses by direct intervention through State Housing Boards, Development Authorities, Cooperative Sector etc.
State Government should also provide a one time incentive in the form of relaxation of Floor Area Ratio (FAR) /Floor Space Index (FSI) norms through appropriate spatial (regulatory) incentives. This would lead to softening of land prices and induce downward trend in house prices, Selja opined.
The National Urban Housing and Habitat Policy, 2007 (NUHHP) adopts the goal of affordable housing for all, and seeks to promote multiple schemes and private-public partnerships in order to achieve it.
It is estimated that 26.53 million houses would be required by the end of the 11th Plan. (ANI)

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