Kepayan Ridge to have 500 affordable homes by 2017

KOTA KINABALU: Five hundred units of affordable homes under the People’s Housing Programme (PPR) will be built at Kepayan Ridge here, with an expected cost of RM80 million.

Located merely 5.7 kilometers from the city centre, 100 units of the total 500 PPR houses in Kepayan Ridge will be allocated as transit homes for young couples under the age of 30.

Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Dato’ Hj Muhyiddin Hj Mohd Yassin, accompanied by Minister of Urban Well-being, Housing and Local Government Dato’ Abdul Rahman Dahlan, Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Musa Haji Aman and Minister of Local Government and Housing Datuk Hajiji Haji Noor, officiated at the groundbreaking ceremony of the PPR project here yesterday.

Abdul Rahman said the development consisted of five blocks of flats and facilities built on 6.437 acres of land belonging to Sabah Housing and Town Development Board (LPPB).

Each unit, spanning 700 square feet, houses three bedrooms, two toilets, a living room, a dining room, a kitchen and a laundry space.

The project is expected to start early next year and to be completed in 2017. The development also includes various facilities including a kindergarten, surau, multipurpose hall, shops, parking lots, management office, playground and open space.

Abdul Rahman said the state government or local authority (PBT) would be responsible for the sale, rental and maintenance of the PPR houses.

“PPR will be rented out at RM124 a month or sold not more than RM 42,000 per unit to the low income group earners who will be selected via an open registration system (SPT) managed by the Sabah state government.

“Compared to the average cost of a unit of PPR at RM 150,000, this means that the government subsidizes up to RM 100,000 (on the sale of a unit of PPR.”

In addition, Abdul Rahman said the government empathized with the difficulty of newly-married young couples in buying their dream homes, thus had taken proactive steps to establish transit homes for them.

It was proposed that 10 to 20 per cent of new PPR will be allocated as transit homes, depending on its location. Young couples under the age of 30 can enjoy cheap rental of the transit homes up to two years before moving into their own home after achieving a stronger financial status.

“The PPR in Kepayan Ridge will allocate 100 units for transit homes, that is 20 per cent of the 500 units which will be built.

“This will be the first in Sabah,” Abdul Rahman said, adding that his ministry would identify more new PPR projects that were suitable for transit homes.

On the other hand, Abdul Rahman reported that there were 29 PPR projects in Sabah involving 20,341 units of PPR homes.

“Sabah ranks the second highest in PPR homes in the country after Kuala Lumpur,” he said.

Of the 29 PPR projects, 15 projects (13,256 units) have been completed, 12 projects (6,235 units) are under construction and two projects (850 units) are under planning.

Statistics showed that the government cared for the people’s need for affordable homes in the whole country, he said.

Abdul Rahman added that the Sabah state government had made a courageous move by allocating this valuable piece of land at Kepayan Ridge to build PPR houses for the low income group.

He expressed his gratitude towards Musa and urged other states to emulate the move to identify strategic sites for PPR projects.

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