(CMR) Housing Minister Jay Ebanks, Parliamentary Secretary Isaac Rankine, Board members, and staff from the National Housing Development Trust (NHDT) recently visited a number of housing projects being undertaken in Bodden Town and East End, as well as a site in North Side that is currently planned for development.
The affordable home sites toured in North Side are located off North Side Road, East End at Will Jackson Drive, and Bodden Town off Lake Destiny Drive and Sitwell Road.
Minister Ebanks said the team used the opportunity to discuss the current projects and highlight approaches to keeping the developments within cost while maintaining the houses affordable to Caymanian families.
“The Government plans to empower the NHDT to increase the number of houses across districts and ensure that they build energy-efficient sustainable units. I am particularly pleased to see that a housing development is moving forward in North Side, and we are committed to having it completed in the near future so that affordable homes are available to the constituents,” emphasized Minister Ebanks.
He further stated, “We want to take a multi-sector approach to address the growing housing needs across our Islands while encouraging private developers and the banking industry to work with us to offer better options for Caymanians.”
NHDT Chairman George Powell stated that he was pleased that the Trust and the approved contractors have committed to complete the contracted works within cost despite the high cost in construction material due to the global pandemic.
“We are mindful that the formulated approach to maintaining cost and keeping houses affordable can be challenging. However, we are driven by the fact that the quality of houses that we are delivering is for prospective Caymanians to realize their dream and pride of homeownership,” he noted.
Commenting on upcoming NHDT developments, Project Committee Chairman Gary Berry said, “The NHDT will be coordinating and implementing new designs for our next upcoming projects, starting with West Bay and moving to North Side. We want to move away from the ideology of low-income housing, which has a negative stigma. We are currently in the planning stage for further projects and want to encourage young Caymanians to stop by the National Housing Development Trust office to collect application forms and sign up”.
Since this year, the NHDT has started the construction of ten affordable houses, with seven in East End and three at the Bodden Town site. The Trust is currently in the planning phase with earthworks as well as infrastructure preliminary works set to commence in the coming weeks at the North Side site.