Informal housing delivery : assessing it's potential contribution in formulating enabling low income housing standards : the case of Kamatipa settlement in Kitwe, Zambia.
Mwango, Mundashi Alexander.
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This study looks at the potential contribution of informal housing delivery in establishing enabling low-income housing standards in Kitwe, Zambia as a way of addressing the shortage of adequate and affordable housing for the urban poor. Informal housing delivery is increasingly being seen as the urban poors' response to the chronic shortage of housing in most cities in developing countries. Proponents of informal housing delivery have been alluding to the many positive impacts that informal housing has on the poor households since the 1960's. This aspect is slowly gaining acceptance in many housing policies in developing countries that are now opting to work with rather than forcefully relocated informal dwellers. The Zambia National Housing Policy set an ambitious list of objectives aimed at realising its goal of providing adequate and affordable housing to all income groups in the country, including the reform of housing standards which currently inhibit the incorporation of informal housing techniques and materials into conventional practices. However, there appears to be no framework within which this objective will be achieved. The study, therefore, investigated the positive attributes of informal housing delivery through a literature review of standards and general discourse and policies regarding traditional, informal and formal housing settlements. Through the literature review, a set of indicators was established to measure and analyse informal housing standards prevailing in Kamatipa, an informal settlement north of the city of Kitwe in Zambia and building regulations that substantially hinder the incorporation of these standards into conventional low-income housing standards. They study establishes a number of positive attributes of informal housing in Kamatipa and the regulations that they contravene under current standards. It concludes by making recommendations towards establishing guidelines for assimilating these positive elements in a reformed regulatory framework to achieve enabling low-income housing standards in the city and country.