The public sector has been a prominent actor in the urban housing sector in the State of West Bengal for the past three decades. Reform measures introduced since 1990 have led to a shift in the mode of public housing delivery from direct provision to providing housing in the market model. The concept of private-sector participation in construction and finance has emerged as a natural response to meet the colossal demand for housing within government's dwindling budgetary capacity and a need for a catalyst to boost macroeconomic conditions. Paradoxically, the public-sector agencies are leading the reform initiatives by assuming the role of a real estate developer. The paper reviews the housing output in Kolkata in the pre- and post-reform eras in terms of housing quantity, quality, price and affordability. It is argued that new reforms have been successful in stimulating the overall housing market, but more targeted programmes are needed to improve the supply, quality and affordability for low-income families in the city.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
- Urban Studies