Housing project transforms Caledonia

HARARE - A housing project in which businessman Adam Molai has an interest, has transformed residential outpost of Caledonia.

The project, being spearheaded by the Housing Corporation of Zimbabwe (HCZ) and the National Social Security Authority (Nssa), has raisedhopes of an end to accommodation woes in the capital when the project is completed.

With housing being a key electoral promise on the eve of elections and with a ballooning housing waiting list, the project at full throttle aims to complete up to 250 housing units per day and has already started taking shape in the first phase of the project.

The corporation’s chief executive officer, Stephen Duggan, with over two decades of experience in infrastructure development in close to 10 countries, is convinced that at the end of the project, Zimbabweans will have access to not only quality housing options but respectable dwellings that shall catapult the nation into true 21st Century type housing amenities.

“Our houses are of the greatest quality and are very durable and offer residents a special experience in accommodation choices that they can afford while living their dream in home ownership and community,” said Duggan in a tour of the project.

While many other projects with the same private-public partnership thrust have failed to take off amidst allegations of graft, mismanagement and cronyism, it is refreshing to see that this particular project between the public sector via Nssa and private union with the Housing Corporation Zimbabwe is taking shape and taxpayer’s money is yielding positive fruit.

While the setting of Caledonia has always had stories of less than habitable conditions for residents, the contrast between the existing settlement and the boom-gated community that HCZ is building is as stark in difference as night and day.

Easily passing for any establishment anywhere in the first world, the aesthetic of the community, architectural excellence, planning perfection and rolling hills that punctuate the scenery in the site no doubt makes this one of the best planned and executed housing pursuits of modern times since the attainment of independence.
Certainly, since the turn of the millennium.

Not only has the project assured superior quality housing, so too has it become an investment and employment opportunity for the city and immediate community.

“We employ 650 employees in a plant in which we invested over 2 million dollars in the community. We also have training initiatives in which we have trained locals who then are capacitated and then start working on our plant in the project,” says Duggan.

The structures, constructed by an American developed system which moulds bricks in one action as opposed to building units from bricks, ensures an end product that is almost four times stronger than the average brick.

“We want to ensure durability in the houses and also ensure that community is also at the centre of this project and provide world class accommodation to our clients.

“At full throttle, we will be able to provide 250 housing units per day and hopefully we will move into the second phase of the project and be able to ease the housing crisis bedevilling the country,” added Duggan.

With such a determined project happening in an unlikely place such as Caledonia, it is indeed a breath of fresh air that some government partners are at least walking the talk and delivering on the expectations of the public funds entrusted to them.

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