'Light public housing will replace sub-divided flats' - RTHK
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'Light public housing will replace sub-divided flats'

2022-10-26 HKT 12:05
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  • 'Light public housing will replace sub-divided flats'
Housing Secretary Winnie Ho says she believes the introduction of the “light public housing” will help phase out sub-divided flats.

Ho made the comment in an exclusive interview with RTHK on Wednesday, a week after Chief Executive John Lee pledged to build 30,000 light public rental units in the coming five years, with the first batch of 1,000 homes ready for tenants to move in in 2024.

The housing chief said when the first such project is near completion, authorities will ask people who have been waiting for public housing for three years or longer whether they would like to apply for a light public rental unit.

She said priority will be given to families living in poor conditions.

Ho said sub-divided homes could eventually be phased out, as light public housing units that are cheaper and boast better features become available.

She said the rent for a light public unit in the urban area will be around HK$8 per square foot, compared with an average of about HK$40 for a sub-divided home.

“The environment will be more spacious. They will have their own windows, their own bathroom. Each family will have a home to their own. It will be safe. And there’s also the [cheaper] rent. I really believe there’s no reason for sub-divided flats to continue to survive."

Ho said she believes the cost of building light public housing will be similar to transitional housing, but authorities are still trying to come up with a price tag to build 30,000 units.

She said authorities will try and speed up the supply of traditional public housing units as well, adding that she is confident the queue for a public flat – which currently stands at six years – will be reduced to “a low level”.

The Chief Executive set a target of reducing the waiting time for public housing to four-and-a-half years in four years in his Policy Address.

'Light public housing will replace sub-divided flats'