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HAJ to provide more than 3,000 housing solutions this fiscal year

Thursday, March 14, 2019

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — General Manager of the Housing Agency of Jamaica Limited (HAJ), Gary Howell, says that the agency will be providing more than 3,000 housing solutions during the 2019/2020 fiscal year.

“We have five projects coming on stream shortly,” he said, noting that at least one development will start before the end of the current fiscal year on March 31.

Howell was speaking at a Think Tank held yesterday at the JIS head office in Kingston.

He noted that the projects, to be implemented across the island, will be undertaken through public-private partnerships.

“With our projects, we use the 'design, build and finance' model. The HAJ puts up the land as equity along with its technical, legal and marketing skills, and the partner will design, build and finance the development, which we sell and share the profits,” Howell explained.

Director of Technical Services at the HAJ, Rosemarie Brown, in providing details said that four solutions will start in the first quarter of the new fiscal year.

“These include [a project at] Bernard Lodge, which should not to be confused with the New Town Bernard Lodge development,” she noted.

“This project will yield 1,600 solutions…We'll be building approximately 600 studio units and the remaining 1,000 units will be one-bedroom houses,” she said.

“We have another project at Shooter's Hill in St Catherine off the Hillshire main road. We will be building just over 600 housing solutions comprising service lots and housing units, which cater to the lower-middle and upper-middle income brackets,” Brown shared.

She noted that these units will be sold for approximately $8 million each.

Meanwhile, the Rhyne Park project in Montego Bay, St James, will yield approximately 744 units.

“We also have a small project in St Andrew in the Mona area. We expect to start this in short order as it is now at the National Contracts Commission (NCC) awaiting approval for the award of the contract, then it will go on to the Cabinet for final approval,” Brown told JIS News.

This development will entail service lots, which will be approximately a quarter acre in size. They will be marketed to the upper-income bracket as the agency tries to generate revenue to fund its operations.

Brown told JIS News that the HAJ is looking to roll out other projects later in the new fiscal year, including at Grange Pen, St James; and the Savannah development in Runaway Bay, St Ann.


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