UN-HABITAT, the Ministry for Capital Investments and the Union of Architects in Serbia has successfully launched a series of competitions in local cities for new social housing designs aimed and consolidating reforms in the housing sector.
With prize money from the Government of Italy, which is financing a major social and housing integration programme for tens of thousands of war refugees and other vulnerable people in Serbia in a project coordinated by UN-HABITAT, the cities of Kragujevac, Kraljevo, Nis, Stara Pazova, and Valjevo each won a first prize worth 1,000 dollars. The awards were presented to the winning designers by the head of UN-HABITAT’s Belgrade office.
In December 2004, UN-HABITAT received 7.2 million euros from the Italian Government for the Social and Housing Integration Programme (SIRPS) in the second allocation of a total of 15 million euros Italy is disbursing for the programme. The first portion of the funding was disbursed a year ago.
The programme aims to provide some 670 new homes for 3,000 refugees and vulnerable people, to build institutional capacities for social housing development, assist the social and economic integration of refugees and displaced people, and help boost the development capacity of local governments in their development planning and municipal information systems.
UN-HABITAT, in collaboration with the Ministry of Capital Investments, has been implementing the programme in the seven municipalities of Cacak, Kragujevac, Kraljevo, Nis, Pancevo, Stara Pazova and Valjevo.
The idea of the competition is to promote innovative and different approaches for the design of social housing solutions, contribute to the experimentation and development of European best practices in design and construction of pilot projects in Serbian Municipalities. All proposed concept design solutions are developed in accordance with national and local regulations.
The works are on display in each city hall, and a permanent exhibition of all entries of the winning entries is on display at the UN-HABITAT Belgrade office to disseminate the award-winning ideas as widely as possible among the public, students and professionals. Further competitions are scheduled during the course of 2006.