PROPERTY developer Contempo Property Holdings Inc. will launch more residential projects next year. Beverly Dayanan, the firm’s chief executive officer, said over a thousand new house units will be added to Cebu’s housing inventory as she plans to add at least two horizontal projects, one each in the south and north of Cebu. “By next year, we will be aggressive in horizontal developments,” said Dayanan, following the success of the firm’s flagship project in Mandaue City, the Bamboo Bay Community. She said these projects will address the economic to mid-housing needs of the province. According to Dayanan, there is still a huge room for growth in Cebu, as far as housing is concerned, on the back of the province’s booming economy that has resulted in high consumer spending and the expansion of the middle-income class.

She said that while condominiums fit city living, professionals based in the city will eventually invest in house-and-lot units in their hometowns. These new projects, she added, also aim to address the housing requirement in booming corridors of Cebu. Contempo’s flagship project Bamboo Bay features 700 condominium units, while its affiliate Sunberry Homes offers 400 units of mixed socialized and economic house-and-lot units in the 2.5-hectare property in Lapu-Lapu City. The housing backlog remains a big challenge for the country. The Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council estimates the country’s current housing backlog at 5.6 million. This is projected to balloon to 12.3 billion in 2030, according to data from the Subdivision and Housing Developers Association (SHDA). House committee on housing and urban development chairman Rep. Alfredo Benitez of Negros Occidental, in a report, said reforms need to be introduced to wipe out the backlog. Benitez said the government, with the help of the private sector, should construct at least one million housing units a year and that this could be achieved with the passage of several housing-related measures, including the creation of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (DHUD). Two months ago, Sen. Joseph Victor Ejercito, chairman of the committee on urban planning and housing, called for the immediate approval of the bill that will consolidate all eight government agencies that focus on the housing sector. (KOC)

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