By Jhon Aldrin Casinas
Around 400 families could benefit from the 22-story public housing building that broke ground in San Juan City Friday, Mayor Francis Zamora said.
Zamora and National Housing Authority (NHA) General Manager Marcelino Escalada Jr led the groundbreaking ceremony of the high-rise public housing project on Friday morning.
The building, which will rise on the city government’s 1,850 sqm. property, is located in Barangay St. Joseph, adjacent to the one-stop-shop government center that is currently under construction.
“This is the first high-rise and in-city public socialized housing in the Philippines,” Zamora said.
“This one will house 396 families and if our cooperation with the NHA will continue, this will not be the only building here for public housing,” he said.
The building has an average unit size of 29 square meters. It will have 396 housing units with 10 commercial units on the first floor.
Rent on commercial units, Zamora said, will subsidize the maintenance of the common areas and facilities.
Parking spaces for automobiles and motorcycles will be at the second floor. WiFi access points will also be set up in the building.
“We have to maximize whatever remaining land we have and we have to develop vertically,” he said.
The mayor said the project will cost around P1 billion which will be funded by the NHA in separate tranches.
A committee, Zamora said, will be formed to spearhead the processing of the beneficiaries’ application for the housing project. He added that the price of each unit is yet to be finalized.
”Our priority are our informal settlers and those residing in danger zones, and at the same time, those in the formal sector can also apply,” the mayor said.
“I would like to emphasize that this is not for free. The homeowners will have to pay an amortization depending if they belong to the informal sector or formal sector,” he said.
Zamora said there are about 6000 informal settlers families in San Juan.