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Haiti Housing Plans: BBBC vs Kay Pam
- Thursday, June 16, 2011 7:23 PM
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti - Two national housing initiatives on President Michel Martelly's table, one was presented by the IHRC, Chaired by U.S. President Bill Clinton and current Prime Minister Jean Max Bellerive on Wednesday, and the other by the National Bank of Credit and would have been presented by the late Guiteau Toussaint on Tuesday.
Building Back Better Communities (BBBC) is the development of the Interim Haiti Recovery Commission (IHRC) and is being funded by several institutions involved in the commission.
BBBC offers pros through innovations relatively new to Haiti such as "Green Technology", resourcefulness of waste and energy, and job opportunities. The initiative focuses on what its name says, building communities. Communities focused on these principles.
The BBBC takes on housing through what it calls Examplar Community Development, where one housing project is selected at the upcoming expo, which will be the typical example or excellent model.
140-home housing models throughout the country is the vision. The first community, Zorange, went over these projections as it is 400 homes and they will be built in 100 days. In the midst of the hurricane season, 260 homes above par and in haste is widely understood.
But what is at the heart of the matter is whether one really owns the home or not. The fear is that the BBBC will amount to nothing more than a nationwide chain of housing "projects". Monolithic communities that usually bring property values down because there's no sentimental value, because there's no individuality, because there's no ownership.
A neighborhood where persons, individuals, own property and put value into them - from their sentiment - differs from a community where everything is uniform and is not owned by individuals. In these ownership-less situations we develop ghettos and projects.
"Kay Pam" is the name given to the program by the National Bank of Credit which translates in English to, "My House".
This housing model was made possible during the presidency of Rene Preval and was made possible by the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund which enabled banks with $47 million dollars for micro mortgages.
This project allows for individuality and economic growth as citizens would have to buy building supplies and hire work to build their own homes, mortgaged homes. Micro mortgages is what Kay Pam calls for so it is expected that they are low interest loans and made accessible to the majority.
Kay Pam is not without its faults. For one, no green technology and two, building codes maybe overlooked. As well, financing, even if it is micro financing, in situations where job opportunities are scarce could only further stall the economy.
But the plan did include a lottery component, where if one plays one can win a home. It is a gamble but this component of Kay Pam, if executed correctly, could make up for defaults in loans and pay for subsidizing green technologies and enforcing building codes.
So the issue is ownership. It doesn't seem to be an either, or, situation as recent events indicate that both plans will be implemented, "tet kale!" But the president is without "his" Prime Minister.
The details of the plans haven't been completely disclosed to the public but DH has contacted both institutions and will follow up in the event of a response.
Related 06.15.2011: Bill Clinton, IHRC Presents National Housing Plan
Related 05.25.2011: Earthquake-Resistant Design is Not New to Haiti
Related 05.07.2011: Housing Project Rising North of P-au-P
Related 06.13.2011: Slain Bank Chairman Would Have Launched Haiti's First Public Mortgage Program