Work on a housing development valued at R200 million in Dobsonville, Extension 2, has begun and is expected to be completed by June 2016.

As part of its ongoing attempts to alleviate the housing shortage in the city, The Johannesburg Social Housing Company (JOSHCO)   is building 502 rental housing units.

The project is expected to deliver 152 one-bedroom units and 350 two-bedroom homes for the rental market and create more than 700 jobs during the construction phase.

“There is a critical gap in the housing market,” says Rory Gallocher, Joshco CEO. “There are a huge number of people living in Johannesburg who do not qualify for RDP housing at the lower end and also many who cannot afford a bond at the higher end. The provision of rental housing ensures that residents who do not qualify for government-subsidised or bonded houses are also catered for.”

He continues, “It is Joshco’s mandate to increase low cost rental housing so that people who earn between R3 500 and R7 000 can have a roof over their heads and eventually move into bonded houses once their economic situation improves.” Joshco’s rental housing scheme is aimed at benefiting only South African citizens living in Johannesburg.

In addition to the provision of housing, the development in Dobsonville has a number of important benefits. Of the R200 million, about R52 million has been allocated for empowerment purposes.

These funds will be channelled towards the creation of local suppliers, skills training and small and medium enterprise development.

Part of the Dobsonville project is funded by the Social Housing Regulatory Authority (SHRA). These units will be subsidised and aimed at people who earn less than R3 500 a month.

For a one-bedroom unit with a kitchen, lounge and bath, a pre-qualified renter will be expected to pay anything from R750 to R2 000 monthly rent.

“The Dobsonville project adds to the City of Johannesburg’s growing portfolio of housing initiatives. These include Lufhereng, Fleurhof and South-Hills developments,” says Gallocher.

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