A project focused on restoring a historic town centre supporting economic and community regeneration and a targeted programme for providing accommodation for chronically homeless people are the winners of the 2013 World Habitat Awards – chosen from over 200 entries from across the globe.
The Hebron Old City Rehabilitation Programme in Palestine aims to re-populate the deteriorated city centre, preserve cultural heritage, support local economic development and provide affordable housing.
Through a sensitive rehabilitation and restoration process using traditional techniques and materials, the Hebron Rehabilitation Committee has renovated over 1,000 housing units, many of which had been abandoned and are now inhabited by approximately 6,000 people.
The 2013 World Habitat Awards winners were announced at the 2013 World Habitat Day celebrations in Medellín, Colombia on Monday 7 October. The awards will be presented at the World Urban Forum, hosted by UN-Habitat in Medellín from 5-11 April 2014.
Dr Joan Clos, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN-Habitat commented, “The initiative to address depopulation by rehabilitating Hebron Old City very much satisfies one of our thematic areas in Shelter Rehabilitation, where the main focus is on rebuilding and restoring the center of cities back to their original mixed use.”
The World Habitat Awards were established in 1985 by the Building and Social Housing Foundation as part of its contribution to the United Nations International Year of Shelter for the Homeless. Two awards of USD 16 000 are given annually to projects that provide practical and innovative solutions to current housing needs and problems.
By 2014 Community Solutions’100,000 Homes Campaign aims to find and permanently house 100,000 of the most long-term and vulnerable people experiencing homelessness in the USA. The aim is to change the way that communities respond to homelessness by targeting those most in need.
Over 67,000 long-term and medically vulnerable homeless people have been permanently housed to date. Hospital costs have been reduced, as has return to jail. Levels of income and employment have increased.
Dr Clos added, “The 100 000 Homes Campaign’s innovative approach to providing permanent housing solutions to the homeless and vulnerable indeed resonates with a key objective of UN-Habitat, ‘housing for all’. I particularly commend the initiative’s attempt to shift efforts away from emergency responses to long-term solutions.”
Theo Schilderman, Head of International Programmes at the Building and Social Housing Foundation - founders and co-ordinators of the World Habitat Awards - commented: “We are delighted to present these two projects as our winners for 2013. Both projects have really demonstrated the impact that co-ordinated effort can have on improving the housing and lives of people in very vulnerable situations.”
Schilderman added, “The two successful winners for 2013 were selected from hundreds of entries from around the world. Submissions for the next round of Awards and more information on how to apply can be found at www.worldhabitatawards.org”
The winners of the 2013 World Habitat Awards are:
The World Habitat Awards were established in 1985 by the Building and Social Housing Foundation as part of its contribution to the United Nations International Year of Shelter for the Homeless. Two awards of £10,000 are given annually to projects that provide practical and innovative solutions to current housing needs and problems.
The winners of the 2013 World Habitat Awards are:
Hebron Old City Rehabilitation Programme - Palestine
Restoration and reuse of historic buildings, regenerating urban infrastructure and supporting local economic development to reverse depopulation
The 100,000 Homes Campaign - USA
Scaling up a ‘housing-first’ approach to provide accommodation for thousands of the most vulnerable and chronically homeless people across the USA
The eight finalists for the 2013 Awards are:
Community Management of Urban Infrastructure – Argentina
Promoting social inclusion, improving housing conditions and connecting communities to basic services
The Struggle for Housing in Central Areas – Brazil
Community-led mutual aid housing in city centre areas, addressing issues of displacement and gentrification
Cooperative Programme for the Development of Urban Neighbourhoods – Cameroon
Building a culture of public participation in urban development through participatory budgeting and cooperative housing processes
CCOC Beaver Barracks Redevelopment – Canada
High performance energy-efficient building providing mixed use, affordable and inclusive rental housing in downtown Ottawa
Milton Park Community – Canada
Mobilisation to protect residents from evictions, halt gentrification and provide permanently affordable housing in Montreal
Full details of each of the 2013 World Habitat Award finalists are available on the World Habitat Awards website www.worldhabitatawards.org
The Building and Social Housing Foundation (BSHF) is an independent research organisation that promotes sustainable development and innovation in housing through collaborative research and knowledge transfer. Established in 1976, BSHF works both in the UK and internationally to identify innovative housing solutions and to foster the exchange of information and good practice.
BSHF is committed to promoting housing policy and practice that is people-centred and environmentally responsible. All research carried out has practical relevance and addresses a range of current housing issues worldwide.
For further information please contact: Isobel Ashford, Head of Communications email email@example.com tel +44 (0)1530 510444 and Ana Moreno, Spokesperson UN-Habitat firstname.lastname@example.org tel +254 0702116120