Coun­try House: Dream or re­al­ity? 48

De­tached hous­ing will ac­count for 40% of new homes in 2015

Economy of Belarus - - FRONT PAGE - Yeka­te­rina MARKOVICH

Support Mech­a­nisms

The gov­ern­ment is fully aware that many peo­ple want to live in a sep­a­rate house and tries to help as much as pos­si­ble. The hous­ing pol­icy con­cept up to 2016 pro­vides for mech­a­nisms to pro­mote de­tached hous­ing con­struc­tion. The ma­jor ob­jec­tive of the strat­egy is to in­crease the share of coun­try houses up to 40% (the fig­ure made up about a third in the last five­year pe­riod). The long­term ob­jec­tive is to reach the Euro­pean av­er­age of 50% and higher, so that ev­ery­one who wants to live in a coun­try house should be able to do so. Thus, 24.5 mil­lion square me­ters of de­tached houses is to be built in Be­larus by 2016.

An in­te­grated ac­tion plan has been drafted to ful­fill this goal. It pro­vides for the de­vel­op­ment and ap­proval of con­struc­tion sites, elab­o­ra­tion of a va­ri­ety of stan­dard de­signs and lay­outs and ex­pan­sion of the num­ber of ser­vices. Last year Be­larus adopted a de­tached hous­ing con­struc­tion pro­gram to run un­til 2016 and de­vel­oped sim­i­lar re­gional pro­grams that take into ac­count More and more peo­ple pre­fer coun­try houses over high-rise build­ings in a noisy city cen­ter. In­deed, de­tached dwellings ac­count for half of res­i­den­tial hous­ing in de­vel­oped mar­ket economies. Be­larus is no ex­cep­tion. As the liv­ing stan­dards are im­prov­ing and the coun­try is switch­ing to mar­ket forms of prop­erty own­er­ship, the in­ter­est in de­tached houses is in­creas­ing. It is ab­so­lutely nat­u­ral. After all, a de­tached home is the best way to meet your in­di­vid­ual needs and pref­er­ences, like the num­ber of rooms, the size and lay­out of a house. You can also set the pace of con­struc­tion or ex­pand the house later if needed. Be­sides, liv­ing in the coun­try, away from the hus­tle and bus­tle of a city, is another sig­nif­i­cant ad­van­tage of a de­tached house over an ap­part­ment in a high-rise. de­mo­graphic, eco­nomic, so­cial and other char­ac­ter­is­tics of the re­gions.

How­ever, prac­ti­cal steps should be taken to make the pro­grams work. After all, the de­tached hous­ing pro­gram re­quires pro­gres­sive con­struc­tion tech­nolo­gies. Spe­cial­ists of the Ar­chi­tec­ture and Con­struc­tion Min­istry hold the same view.

“In or­der to boost de­tached hous­ing con­struc­tion, we need to make the process more tech­nol­o­gy­in­ten­sive. We need to turn con­struc­tion into a mech­a­nized con­tin­u­ous process. In other words, we need to pro­duce struc­tures and blocks at in­dus­trial en­ter­prises and then as­sem­ble them at a con­struc­tion site,” be­lieves Deputy Head of the Hous­ing Pol­icy Depart­ment of the Ar­chi­tec­ture and Con­struc­tion Min­istry Vladimir Doropiye­vich.

Ad­vanced tech­nolo­gies will al­low a wider use of turnkey con­struc­tion projects. They will also en­able us to build high­qual­ity, cus­tomer­tai­lored houses and of­fer a broad range of lay­outs, de­signs and ar­chi­tec­tural so­lu­tions. Us­ing th­ese

tech­nolo­gies we will be able to build houses in vir­tu­ally green­field land. In other words we will not need an ex­ten­sive so­cial, en­gi­neer­ing and trans­port in­fra­struc­ture to start a hous­ing con­struc­tion project. Most im­por­tantly, the use of pre­fab­ri­cated struc­tures that re­quire lit­tle mech­a­nized in­stal­la­tions at a con­struc­tion site will al­low dra­mat­i­cally cut­ting costs as­so­ci­ated with la­bor and raw ma­te­ri­als, and ac­cel­er­at­ing the pace of con­struc­tion, thus re­duc­ing the prime cost of a fin­ished house, Vladimir Doropiye­vich said.

The Con­struc­tion and Ar­chi­tec­ture Min­istry ex­plained that in­dus­ tri­al­ized de­tached hous­ing con­struc­tion in­volves the pro­duc­tion of com­plete sets of prod­ucts and other items for the con­struc­tion of both de­tached and semi­de­tached res­i­den­tial build­ings. At the same time in­stal­la­tion ser­vices can be made part of the pack­age. Thus, a fam­ily can choose a project to its bud­get and man­age con­struc­tion costs.

Ac­cord­ing to the plans, de­tached hous­ing built to the in­dus­trial method will ac­count for 31.2% of new out­of­city hous­ing in 2014, and 39.5% in 2015. Large­panel hous­ing de­vel­op­ment will in­crease to 300,000 square me­ters by 2016. Three do­mes­tic or­ga­ni­za­tions will be in­volved: OAO Lavsanstroi (Mogilev), OAO Stroitrest No.8 (Brest) and OAO Stroitrest No.13 (Bo­bruisk). They are ex­pected to build 40% of all new de­tached houses next year.

Plans have been made to cre­ate new pro­duc­tion fa­cil­i­ties for wooden hous­ing de­vel­op­ment, Deputy Min­is­ter of Ar­chi­tec­ture and Con­struc­tion Dmitry Se­menke­vich in­formed ear­lier. For ex­am­ple, Bara­novichidrev is ex­pected to pro­duce about 500­800 houses a year at the ini­tial stage. Thus, peo­ple will be able to choose the best op­tion that suits their taste.

Gov­ern­ment Pro­cure­ment Con­tract

In H1 this year, Be­larus com­mis­sioned more than 2.7 mil­lion square me­ters of new hous­ing, of which 815,400 square me­ters was de­tached hous­ing. This ac­counted for 43% of the an­nual tar­get and 30% of the to­tal new de­vel­op­ments. Minsk Oblast was the leader in outof­city de­vel­op­ment: 272,500 square me­ters was built in Jan­uary­June, or 38.9% of the an­nual tar­get. It is fol­lowed by Brest Oblast with 213,600 square me­ters of out­ofcity hous­ing in H1 (53.4 % of the an­nual pro­jec­tions), Grodno Oblast (113,200 square me­ters, or 45.3 %), Gomel Oblast (89,100 square me­ters, or 44.6 %), Vitebsk Oblast (61,500 square me­ters, or 58.5 %) and Mogilev Oblast (56,000 square me­ters, or 28%). In Jan­uary­June Minsk com­mis­sioned 9,500 square me­ters of de­tached hous­ing, which rep­re­sents 23.8% of the an­nual pro­jec­tions. All in all, the Be­laru­sian cap­i­tal is ex­pected to build 40,000 square me­ters of de­tached hous­ing in 2014.

815,400 square me­ters of de­tached houses was de­liv­ered

in H1 2014

Vladimir Doropiye­vich said that in or­der to make de­tached hous­ing con­struc­tion more ef­fi­cient, Be­larus is plan­ning to in­tro­duce a gov­ern­ment pro­cure­ment mech­a­nism by the end of the year. So far this mech­a­nism has been used in mul­ti­sto­ried de­vel­op­ment projects only.

Us­ing this mech­a­nism to con­struct homes for peo­ple in need of bet­ter hous­ing who are el­i­gi­ble for state support, the gov­ern­ment will be able to con­trol the vol­ume of in­dus­tri­al­ized de­tached hous­ing con­struc­tion more ef­fi­ciently, he said.

The Min­istry has al­ready pre­pared some 30 lay­outs. They in­clude var­i­ous types of houses with 3 to 6 bed­rooms of the to­tal area from 70 to 220 square me­ters. De­vel­op­ment of new lay­outs con­tin­ues.

The de­sign doc­u­men­ta­tion on res­i­den­tial houses built un­der pub­lic pro­cure­ment may in­clude an op­tion for in­te­rior fin­ish­ing if ap­proved, by mu­nic­i­pal au­thor­i­ties, Vladimir Doropiye­vich said. In other cases, the fin­ish­ing works will be car­ried out at the re­quest of the fu­ture own­ers of the house.

“To­day, it takes peo­ple three to five years to build a house on their own or with the as­sis­tance of a small de­vel­op­ment or­ga­ni­za­tion. Our goal is to re­duce the con­struc­tion process to one year. Be­sides, the mech­a­nism of pub­lic pro­cure­ment, as you know, does not re­quire startup in­vest­ments on the part of fu­ture prop­erty own­ers, i.e. the owner gets loan obli­ga­tions to­gether with the key to a new house,” Vladimir Doropiye­vich said.

Un­der De­cree No. 270 of 6 June 2014 “Con­cern­ing gov­ern­ment spon­sored hous­ing con­struc­tion”, the cost of 1 square me­ter of hous­ing un­der gov­ern­ment pro­cure­ment con­tracts will equal the av­er­age monthly salary with the co­ef­fi­cient of 1.2 in 2014­2016. Ac­cord­ing to Ar­chi­tec­ture and Con­struc­tion Min­is­ter Ana­toly Ch­erny, the in­dus­try of­fers a wide range of de­tached hous­ing projects. Doesn’t it make a per­fect op­tion?

Land Pol­icy

The plans, how­ever, will re­quire more land plots and a net­work of en­gi­neer­ing and trans­port in­fra­struc­ture.

Ac­cord­ing to Vladimir Doropiye­vich, land plots for de­tached hous­ing are se­lected by lo­cal au­thor­i­ties on the ba­sis of the ex­ist­ing ur­ban plan­ning or dis­trict plan­ning doc­u­men­ta­tion, ex­clud­ing forests and agri­cul­tural ar­eas.

As of 1 July 2014 Be­larus al­lo­cated 62,849 land plots for de­tached hous­ing de­vel­op­ment. Of that, nearly 43% was not farm­land. A to­tal of 59,117 cit­i­zens are on the wait­ing list for a plot of land. Of them 54,309 cit­i­zens are on the wait­ing lists for bet­ter hous­ing. Thus, the num­ber of land plots ex­ceeds the num­ber of the peo­ple will­ing to get them by 27.5%. The most dif­fi­cult sit­u­a­tion is in Minsk Oblast where the num­ber of ap­pli­cants ex­ceeds the num­ber of land plots avail­able for de­tached hous­ing de­vel­op­ment. In this case, the hous­ing con­struc­tion in farm­land and forests can be per­mit­ted, only if ap­proved by the head of state.

Land plots should be lo­cated in close vicin­ity of pop­u­lated ar­eas in or­der to min­i­mize the costs of en­gi­neer­ing and trans­port in­fra­struc­ture. De­cree No. 26 signed on 14 Jan­uary 2014 en­vis­ages mea­sures to im­prove the con­struc­tion ac­tiv­ity in the coun­try. The doc­u­ment bans the al­lo­ca­tion or sale of land with no ba­sic util­ity ser­vices or min­i­mal in­fra­struc­ture. Ear­lier it was pos­si­ble to buy via auc­tion or sim­ply get land in the mid­dle of nowhere

with no roads, elec­tric­ity and wa­ter. The buyer, how­ever, was re­quired to launch con­struc­tion within a three­year pe­riod.

Many­kilo­me­ter util­ity lines and ad­di­tional ser­vices could in­crease con­struc­tion costs man­i­fold, to hun­dreds of thou­sands of U.S. dol­lars. The new de­cree pro­vides for the sale of only shovel­ready land to­day, Vladimir Doropiye­vich stressed. Lo­cal au­thor­i­ties are the ones to pre­pare land for home build­ing projects.

Thus, ev­ery con­struc­tion site should be pro­vided with ba­sic en­gi­neer­ing and trans­port in­fra­struc­ture be­fore a con­struc­tion project gets ahead. The in­fra­struc­ture should in­clude elec­tric­ity and wa­ter sup­ply net­works, streets and roads.

Ev­ery­thing should be done be­fore a land plot is al­lo­cated or be­fore a house is com­mis­sioned. That means that wa­ter and elec­tric­ity sup­ply should be avail­able al­ready for the first house in the de­vel­op­ment area. If the project en­vis­ages, for in­stance, in­stal­la­tion of sew­er­age sys­tems and gas sup­ply, it is for the cap­i­tal con­struc­tion man­age­ment ser­vices to pro­vide it, the rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Con­struc­tion and Ar­chi­tec­ture Min­istry ex­plained.

Con­struc­tion of main in­fra­struc­ture lines will be fi­nanced from the na­tional bud­get. After that, the in­fra­struc­ture con­struc­tion cost will be in­cluded in the cadas­tral value of the land plot.

9,500 square me­ters of de­tached hous­ing (23.8% of the an­nual plan) was com­mis­sioned in Minsk in H1 2014

The de­vel­op­ment of the dis­tri­bu­tion in­fra­struc­ture will be a re­spon­si­bil­ity of those who use it.

“The state has built a main line and a dis­tri­bu­tion con­trol fa­cil­ity. If the avail­able land is al­lo­cated on a piece­meal prin­ci­ple, then the en­tire dis­tri­bu­tion in­fra­struc­ture will be built by a con­struc­tion man­age­ment depart­ment. If a land plot is given to a real es­tate de­vel­oper in its en­tirety, this company can build the en­tire in­fra­struc­ture on its own. It is clear that no­body will do it for free. The land plot owner will

have to pay the con­struc­tion man­age­ment depart­ment or the de­vel­oper. In case the de­vel­op­ers cover all costs, they will sell land plots or houses at a mar­ket price. This will en­tirely ex­clude cases when peo­ple are given pieces of bar­ren land to build what­ever they want. If there are such cases, we urge peo­ple to re­port them and we will stop it,” the rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the min­istry said.

De­tached hous­ing de­vel­op­ment is prof­itable and rel­e­vant for those who want to have their own ru­ral houses. It also makes eco­nomic sense for the state. There­fore, the to­tal vol­ume of con­struc­tion will be in­creased while the con­struc­tion of apart­ment blocks, es­pe­cially in big ci­ties, will be re­duced.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Belarus

© PressReader. All rights reserved.