Trunk infrastructure must be established before houses are constructed

The provision of affordable housing has been a major challenge for the government of Papua New Guinea, especially in the major cities such as Port Moresby and Lae. The National Research Institute in its recent Spotlight paper, “Trunk infrastructure must be established before houses are constructed: Lessons from the Duran Farm housing project in Port Moresby”. The article highlighted the need for trunk infrastructure to be in place in an area before houses are constructed. The Duran Farm Housing Project (DFHP) is an example of one of the government’s housing initiatives that has not followed the procedures for orderly development.

The findings revealed that some of the houses have been completed in Duran Farm but are not yet occupied because they lack trunk infrastructure. The delay in the sale of houses at DFHP is costly to the State, the building contractors, and the whole of society. The authors argued that in order for the DFHP to progress, trunk infrastructure must be provided and the government must play a facilitating role, whereas the private sector should focus on building houses.

It concludes by stating that a quality check and a review of the sales prices of the houses at Duran Farm are required so that more people can afford to buy the houses. The Spotlight paper aims to contribute to the debate on the need for orderly development of housing in major cities in Papua New Guinea.

The authors are from the PNG NRI Property Sector Development Research Program: Ms Logea Nao and Professor Eugene Ezebilo.

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