The objectives are to improve the housing conditions of low-income communities and increase land use efficiency in Colombo through investments in the construction of affordable housing and redevelopment of land, along with the associated enhancement of systems and policies.
The Project will support the implementation of URP Phase-III, but with significant improvements, such as improvements in technical design, resettlement and post-resettlement policy, housing maintenance arrangements, innovation in redevelopment approach, and review of longer-term sustainability of public intervention in housing. The Project comprises three components:
Component One: Housing Construction. Component one will support the construction of about 5,500 housing units in multi-story apartment buildings in eight or nine residential complexes.
Component Two: Land Redevelopment. This component will maximize the revenue from the land that will become available after the households from the underserved communities move into the new apartment units constructed under the URP.
Component Three: Technical Support and Project Management. This component will support project management and other measures to improve implementation of the URP.
For more information about project financing, please review the project summary.
AIIB’s Environmental and Social Policy (ESP), including the Environmental and Social Standards (ESSs), is applicable to the Project. As per the Bank’s ESP, the Project has been classified as Category A, due primarily to the scale and complexity of the involuntary resettlement involved. The environmental impacts and risks are typical of urban construction projects of this kind (large-scale housing schemes) as are the health and safety issues. These are expected to be temporary, manageable through adequate mitigation measures, and not irreversible. The social risks and impacts associated with the proposed Project are complex and are mainly related to: (i) the determination of land ownership in the areas to be acquired for sub-projects under Components 1 and 2; (ii) the need to ensure that people’s livelihoods are not adversely affected by the move to the new sites; (iii) ensuring people will adapt to life in high-rise apartment blocks and safeguarding the long-term viability of the housing complexes and services; and (iv) the need to identify and engage with the affected households and other stakeholders, including people living near the new housing schemes, from the beginning of the Project (especially the need to facilitate the active participation of women, young people and people of different ethnic and socio-economic groups). These issues will be addressed through the post-resettlement and other social programs (currently implemented by the UDA) and will be further enhanced under Component 3.
In accordance with the Bank’s ESP and national policy requirements, the Borrower and the Executing Agency have prepared a Resettlement Planning Framework (RPF) and an Environmental and Social Management Planning Framework (ESMPF) that set out the general principles for managing the social and environmental impacts, especially the resettlement and post-resettlement measures needed to ensure that the standards of living and livelihoods of the households that are relocated can be enhanced or, at the very least, restored.
Please review the project summary for additional information.
Senior Investment Operations Specialist
Madara Sevwandi De Silva
External Resources Department
Ministry of National Policies and Economic Affairs
The Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka
Acting Project Director
Urban Development Authority
Ministry of Urban Development
Water Supply and Housing Facilities