In­no­va­tive pilot projects should be pri­ori­tised and fast-tracked

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - PROPERTY -

OVER the next five years, all pilot projects that demon­strate in­no­va­tion in the inclusionary hous­ing space and de­liver af­ford­able hous­ing, or a mix of af­ford­able and open-mar­ket hous­ing, should be given pri­or­ity sta­tus and be fast­tracked with ex­pe­dited plan­ning ap­provals, says Fu­ture Cape Town’s Rashiq Fataar.

Fur­ther­more, pub­licly-re­leased land for af­ford­able hous­ing should be con­sid­ered test sites where part­ner­ships are es­tab­lished with a di­verse mix of de­vel­op­ers and agen­cies.

How­ever, Fataar says it is not just com­mit­ment to the ideal that is needed but also co-op­er­a­tion and col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween lo­cal gov­ern­ment, de­vel­op­ers, de­sign­ers, banks and com­mu­ni­ties on a reg­u­lar ba­sis.

“De­vel­op­ers tend to be riska­verse for var­i­ous rea­sons, in­clud­ing the un­sta­ble po­lit­i­cal and eco- nomic con­text.

“In Cape Town, few de­vel­op­ers have plans to in­clude more di­verse in­come groups in their de­vel­op­ments owing to the high cost of the land, a lack of clear in­cen­tives, as well as a lack of de­ci­sive­ness and lack of clar­ity from the lo­cal gov­ern­ment about how ad­di­tional de­vel­op­ment rights are granted,” says Fataar.

“In essence, there have been no clear terms of en­gage­ment with de­vel­op­ers, com­mu­ni­ties and other groups about achiev­ing a cer­tain num­ber of af­ford­able or inclusionary units in a par­tic­u­lar time-frame.”

Blok’s Jac­ques van Emb­den says, how­ever, that the na­tional and lo­cal gov­ern­ment have pre­vi­ously sug­gested that they lack the re­sources to tackle the coun­try’s hous­ing is­sues alone, so this pos­si­bly makes inclusionary hous­ing de­vel­op­ment mod­els and in­cen­tives for pri­vate de­vel­op­ers the most vi­able op­tion.

From a de­vel­oper’s point of view, Van Emb­den says some have noted con­cerns re­gard­ing the costs and re­turns of cer­tain mod­els, as well as other post-de­vel­op­ment mat­ters such as en­sur­ing the homes re­main af­ford­able for cur­rent and fu­ture own­ers.

Van Emb­den says: “The new­ness of this ap­proach also re­quires lo­cal gov­ern­ments to still adapt their own poli­cies and ap­proval pro­cesses to ac­com­mo­date it, which in some instances does not hap­pen as quickly as needed.

“Inclusionary hous­ing mod­els in which cities pro­vide in­cen­tives, such as ad­di­tional de­vel­op­ment rights for free or at a low cost, could pro­vide a mu­tu­ally ben­e­fi­cial com­pro­mise for the de­vel­op­ers and the mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties.”

PIC­TURE: BLOK

The Forty on L site in con­text with the rest of Bo Kaap.

PIC­TURE: AZRAA RAWOOT/FU­TURE CAPE TOWN 80:20 SE­RIES

The five sites in Cape Town ear­marked for re­de­vel­op­ment for af­ford­able hous­ing.

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