As Malaysia seeks to have a more sustainable and inclusive housing sector, it can learn from Japan’s public housing mechanism and smart wellness and sustainable townships.
Housing and Local Government (KPKT) Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin said a key takeaway from the EdgeProp Malaysia Study Tour on Excellent Building Sustainability, Management and Wellness 2019 in Japan was how low-income earners, requiring housing assistance, were divided under public housing schemes into two sub-categories based on income levels.
The sub-categories were for the below B17 group and the B17 to B40 group, where the monthly rents for public housing units were set accordingly, reported The Edge Markets.
“This gave me an idea to break the B40 grouping (in Malaysia) down to the B20 or B10 so that it would be more effective and targeted in solving the homeownership difficulties faced by this group,” Zuraida said.
She met with Japan’s Parliamentary Vice-Minister For Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Masamune Wada before being briefed on Japan’s public housing schemes and regulations. The meeting was followed with a visit to the Fujisawa smart and sustainable township (SST).
Zuraida wanted to learn about the liveability of public housing in Japan, specifically the indoor air quality in such homes.
An example would be Japan’s Building Standard Law prohibiting the use of building materials containing chlorpyrifos in buildings having habitable rooms, as it is considered a health hazard.
The law also regulates the usage of formaldehyde-emitting construction materials and requires buildings to have a ventilation equipment capable of handling the dangerous organic compound.
“Maybe there is something that we can do to modify our standards to ensure that our people are able to enjoy the basic rights to having good-quality air,” she said.
Image source from Edge Prop