Friday, July 19, 2024

Government aims for resilient housing project after Hurricane Lisa


On Monday, November 7th, Prime Minister Honourable Dr. John Briceño stated that at least $20 million is needed to assist the areas affected by Hurricane Lisa. Most of these areas in and around Belize City experienced the destruction of homes poorly built. According to the Prime Minister, the plan moving forward is to assist in rebuilding these structures with more substantial materials like concrete, strong enough to withstand powerful storms. As such, he said the long-term plan is a housing project to see sturdy homes across the country.
Hurricane Lisa landed in Belize City on Wednesday, November 2nd, and most of the damaged homes were built with plywood. “A board house, if it was properly built, can withstand a hurricane,” said Briceño. “Our idea is that we want to be able to build as many houses as we possibly can for as many people as we can within the affected areas. Afterwards, probably for middle-class families, we will see if we can get some low-cost funding and interest rates so they could also rebuild and build better.” The Prime Minister emphasized that helping people to rebuild their homes with materials like plywood goes against a resilient housing project. The Ministry of Housing continued its survey looking at the total damage caused by the storm and made a final report. This final assessment will determine if $20 million will be enough for a full recovery.

Briceño noted that it would be a huge task, but it needs to be done. The Prime Minister appealed to the business sector to start the housing project. “I want to appeal to the business community that for them to be able to assist us, they can make donations of $100, $1,000, or anything they can give for us to build the housing stock needed,” said Briceño. He also said this assistance would also be used to feed people. “We need help from everybody,” he ended.
Other areas affected by the storm included a portion of the Philip Goldson Highway from Belize City to the Haulover Bridge. While in Belize City, the Supreme Court buildings sustained damages along with several schools.

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