The Transport and Housing ministry in Kenya is planning to construct 8,000 houses in Mavoko, Machakos County. The houses will be set up on a 55-acre piece of land and construction will commence next month.
Transport and Housing Cabinet Secretary James Macharia confirmed the reports and said that the initiative is part of a larger plan to construct 1 million houses within the next five years. This will be in line with building 200,000 units every year targeting the middle class.
“Apart from the piece of land in Mavoko, we are considering other locations where the government owns land so that we can build there as well. We are also planning to set up 10,000 units to clear up slums in informal settlements as part of social housing mission,” Macharia pointed out.
The social housing project
The national government will fully carry out the social housing project and will be assisted by the National Treasury, while the 1 million house project will include private sector players’ participation.
“The social housing project will be executed within the slums. This is mainly because there is a vast majority of slum dwellers who want to remain within those locations. We are also considering the issue of lack of land. With proper utilization of technology, this is will be possible,” he explained.
The National Housing Corporation (NHC), a parastatal under the Ministry of Housing, will contribute 6,000 houses to the mega project with a target of reaching eight counties over the next three years.
NHC chairman Francis Gitau Mungai said the parastatal will also construct housing estates with a combined 5,000 units on Eldoret (Uasin Gishu County), Stoni Athi (Machakos County) and Changamwe (Mombasa County) and another 1,000 units in Voi (Taita Taveta County), Kericho, Kisumu, Meru and Nyeri Counties.
“We are mindful of the fact that most Kenyans are yearning to access decent and affordable housing and that is why we have an agenda of constructing houses in the eight counties,” Mungai said,
Conventional estimates reveal that Kenya has a shortage of close to 2 million houses; however, among the issues that face the sector is the availability of land and utilization of new technology.