After the successful completion of Phase 1 of Under the hill housing project at the end of December 2013 and Homes rented as early as the beginning of January 2014, Phase 2 will become a reality.
On June 6th, 2018 a contract was signed between the Public Entity Saba and the contractor Van Boekel and the execution of the work will commence in September. After completion, there will be a total of 18 units available consisting of one, two and three bedroom homes located directly above Phase 1. The completion of this project will significantly help Own Your Own Home Foundation in assisting persons looking for rental homes. Present during the signing of the contract was the Island Governor Jonathan Johnson, Commissioner of housing, Rolando Wilson, Board member of Own Your Own Home Foundation, Piet Gerritsen, the contractor represented by Lars Vincken, head of the Planning Bureau Robert Zagers, and the housing corporation Woonlinie represented by Maarten Koster and Hugo Meijwaard.
The Commissioner stated that this is once again a historic moment for the community of Saba as this opens up the door for future housing possibilities for families and he would like to thank Woonlinie, The European Union and all parties who in one way or the other assisted in making this a reality.
Assistance by the European Commission
The European Commission has an item in their 10th EDF territorial programme to support the 2016-2020 Saba Housing Vision plan
The overall objective of the programme is to support the improvement of the living conditions of low income residents and assist poverty alleviation on the island, through the implementation of the Saba Housing Vision plan. As such, the programme’s purpose is to provide adequate and accessible social infrastructure and services for socially deprived groups and to establish a framework to meet the housing needs of Saba’s residents in the years to come.
The sector budget support to Saba’s social housing policy is expected to contribute to the following results:
- building an access road, cisterns and the foundations of the social houses to be constructed under the second phase of the Under the Hill Project;
- establishing and maintaining a database on existing and new low income housing;
- establishing a register of applicants;
- revising the selection criteria and procedures for selecting low income housing candidates;
- developing a housing plan for young families and/or starters;
- studying/assessing alternatives to meet accommodation needs for future increases of students attending the School of Medicine.
Furthermore, the 2016-2020 Housing Vision plan will address the obstacles of vulnerable groups in the society, in particular single mothers.
Support is implemented via the sector budget support modality from December 2013 until December 2020. The different components of the financial envelope are as follows:
- Budget support component: EUR 2.8 million
- Technical assistance: EUR 100 000
- Communications and visibility: EUR 60 000
- Evaluation: EUR 40 000