In light of Papua New Guinea’s dilemma of housing shortage, the National Housing Corporation (NHC) recently launched a social housing program called the Duran Farm.
The Duran Farm project is the NHC’s pragmatic step towards curbing the lingering lack in housing for public servants and residents. NHC’s great initiative would mean that the bulk of Papua New Guineans forced to live in settlements and second-rate housings will not have to settle for less any longer.
A major housing master plan that is worth K7 million, Duran Farm is located on Portion 528 near 8 Mile which is just outside of Port Moresby. It is expected to deliver 2500 houses yearly per contractor. Apart from the construction of these houses, there will also be the creation of various amenities like schools, clinics, hotels, shops, banks and a fire station.
Duran Farm is the first urban development lease where underdeveloped land will be completely obtained by the NHC and the Housing Department. Furthermore, what makes it even more unique is that the total cost of development will not be incurred by the end user.
Not only is Duran Farm a beacon for countless Papua New Guineans struggling to find affordable accommodation but it is also an indicator of housing development finally reaching Papua New Guinea’s shores. Construction of Duran Farm is set to commence once a tender notice is posted by the Central Supplies and Tender Board. So far there are 106 successful applicants who have been submitted to the National Development Bank (NDB).
Although Duran Farm will bring about housing development for Papua New Guinea, it will not ultimately alleviate the NHC’s current predicament of finding means to accommodate public servants. Since most of Papua New Guinean land is customarily owned, this poses a problem for any form of housing development like Duran Farm.
Being located on land that is customarily owned, Duran Farm project is already facing threats from the landowner.
Landowner, Ogoni Dabunari Land Group of Baruni Village has already warned that the multimillion project will not progress if it is not sufficiently compensated. As a result of this, it is important that the Government insure that housing development is carried out on land without any customary ties, preferably State land. Yet this is not the case for Duran Farm and so it is up to the Government to ensure that it proceeds without any hiccups as the project has drawn a lot of interests from both the private and public sectors.
Copyright Hausples.com.pg, article by Pauline Mago-King