After eight long months of researching, writing, analyzing, and some fun, my capstone team has finally finished our final project (aka group thesis) on slum upgrading strategies in Metropolitan Manila. Our work included traveling to Manila for three weeks in July and researching housing strategies and slum upgrading projects with two local World Bank consultants. Our final paper will hopefully contribute to the World Bank’s plan to help Metropolitan Manila develop a unified slum upgrading strategy.
The story of Manila’s lack of affordable housing is one complicated by the fact that this metro area of 11 million people is also comprised of 17 separate local government units that do not coordinate affordable housing projects. Also in Metro Manila about 50% of the total population can not afford to acquire any form of secure housing, forcing millions to inhabit the city as illegal squatters. However there is hope as many communities have self mobilized to apply for the Community Mortgage Program to upgrade their own informal settlements. Also Habitat for Humanity has been building medium rise developments resulting in much improved communities. Please enjoy a few pictures from our experience this summer.
A medium rise Habitat for Humanity housing project consisting of four buildings with twelve units each.