Kenyan government to construct 300, 000 housing units for staff

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The government of Kenya through the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development is planning to put up 300, 000 houses for civil servants by 2017. The social housing project will see the country alleviate housing needs by civil servants, some of which – like the police – have been reported to live in deplorable conditions.

The government will start construction of 10, 000 units this year according to the director of housing in the ministry, Mr. Patrick Bucha. In addition to benefiting civil servants, the project will also help non-governmental workers and the rest of the public, since the government will open up spaces for commercial purposes for the same.

The government will collaborate with private investors in order to finance the construction, development, and maintenance of the housing units. The project will entail the construction of modern, spacious, and high-rise buildings. The houses will be 12 and 15 floors tall and will replace old housing units that sit on government estates.

Lands Cabinet Secretary Charity Ngilu has also said that the government will improve on Shauri Moyo, Park Road, and Starehe estates, which will host government workers. “The urgency to begin the construction of these houses cannot be gainsaid,” she added.

Mr. Bucha, on his part, indicated that the project will involve densifying the prime estates neighboring CBD to accommodate more tenants.

“It makes more sense, in the urban renewal sense, to develop the estates to accommodate more units,” He said. A Nairobi architect has, however, said that the project could become a pipe dream unless the government implements Western technologies and the use of prefabs.