Ongos Valley Development director Americo de Almeida yesterday revealed that they have made tremendous progress in their multi-billion-dollar housing investment, and a ground-breaking ceremony is expected to take place end of this month.
He made the announcement yesterday at State House when he briefed President Hage Geingob on the progress Ongos Valley Development has made so far in its N$4.3 billion housing investment. Last year, Ongos Valley Development launched a housing project with a promise to construct 30 000 housing units over 15 to 20 years as of this year.
The aim of the project is to alleviate the critical housing shortage in Windhoek for the low- to middle-income households by undertaking a large-scale, cost-effective development, driven by private initiative and supported by government.
In the long term, Ongos said, the project will supply more than 25 000 housing units for the low- and middle-income classes, four business centres including 106 business plots, 48 institutional plots, and over 20 percent of the development dedicated to public and conservation open areas.
In 2017, Nedbank Corporate and Investment Banking signed a partnership agreement with Ongos Valley Development for the servicing and construction of a proposed 3 665 low- and middle-income residential housing units at a total cost of N$3.7 billion.
However, de Almeida said they managed to secure N$4.3 billion for the up to 30 000-unit housing project to kick-start.
Nedbank executive: Corporate Investment Banking and Treasury Karl-Stefan Altmann yesterday said that about 4 000 direct and 9 000 indirect jobs would be created.
Further, he said, financing partners of the project include Development Bank of Namibia, Absa, Nedbank, Standard Bank and Development Corporation of Botswana.
“The first stage of the investment of the first phase will be N$1 billion which is about 4 500 houses that will be built. It will be sub-divided and over a period of five years, and the 4 500 houses will be developed. The big project is over a period between 15 and 20 years that will reduce to 20 000 houses over that lifetime. So, it’s a very big project,” Altmann said.
He promised that once the houses are complete, the cheapest house will start from N$300 000 to a range of N$800 000.
He said the Ongos project is not a mass housing project, but a green village self-contained area with schools, hospitals, police stations and a cemetery, among other services.He said the project is situated behind Monte Christo in Katutura. Geingob welcomed the project and promised to do the ground-breaking.
“We are looking for this kind of things. I was in Rwanda and I must say, they are making good progress in their housing development schemes. It’s all private investment, not government. So, I am happy to hear this to address this problem of squatting. I think we can do this if we really hold hands. Its really good news,” Geingob noted.
In terms of regulatory requirements, de Almeida confirmed everything has been addressed and last week they signed a development agreement that allows them to start physical construction. He added that the contractor Octagon Construction will take possession of the site on Thursday to start site establishment.