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News: Social Programs

Communities Playing Greater Role in Venezuelan Housing Construction

Mérida, 3rd September 2012 ( – 96,872 houses have been built through Venezuela’s mass house construction program so far this year, of which almost 50% (48,263) have been built by local communities.

Since the launch of the government’s Great Housing Mission Venezuela (GMVV) in April last year, 243,990 new houses have been built, amounting to 70% of the 2011 – 2012 goal of 350,000, said Nelson Rodriguez, a housing ministry official, last Thursday. The figure includes public, private and community construction combined.

The GMVV program is the Venezuelan government’s attempt to tackle the country’s long-term housing deficit, and aims to build up to 3 million new homes by 2019.

Through initiatives such as the Integral Transformation of Habitat (TIH) and Substitution of Shanties for Houses (SUVI) programs, grassroots communities have been making a significant contribution to the GMVV.

Last Thursday over 1,200 houses were handed over to families as part of the GMVV, including a complex of 60 houses in Carabobo state, designated a “New Community Space”. The complex was built through the TIH initiative, with local communal councils managing the project’s 6.9 million bolivar (US $1.6 million) budget.

At a ceremony to handover the housing complex to families, Margaud Godoy, Vice-Minister of Communal Participation, praised the participation of socialist construction brigades in the project.

“The labour of grassroots power in this construction work was essential and forms part of the greatest achievements of the [Bolivarian] revolution. This is the result of the organisation of our productive forces,” she said.

Meanwhile, the president of Venezuelan Property Chamber, Aquiles Martini Pietri, criticised the housing constructed by the Venezuelan government as below safety and quality standards.

Referring to alleged safety issues in the government’s new “Socialist City Caribia” as an example, he said “the houses that are being built don’t include parking, urban planning, public services, access or elevators. Because of the hurry to hand over the maximum number of houses possible for electoral and political reasons, supervision, quality control and occupancy permits are being skipped over”.

Published on Sep 3rd 2012 at 8.40pm