Providing Affordable Home Ownership Opportunities in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
The City Administration of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, has engaged in an extensive public effort to build owner-occupied housing to meet the needs of low- and moderate-income residents. By comparing the city’s distribution of land uses between 2006 and 2016, we were able to observe land use changes, specifically those related to housing type and location. Over that ten-year period, informal/slum housing decreased from 57 percent to 38 percent of the total housing stock. Singlefamily housing increased from 5 percent to 25 percent, and high-rise condominium housing rose from 1 percent to 11 percent. However, many of the new condominium housing units are located near the city’s outer edge, which has exacerbated existing transportation problems. While access to sanitation has increased in the new units, owners have raised concerns that water and electricity provision are insufficient to meet their needs. In new residential areas, nearby open space and employment opportunities are largely absent. In some buildings, owners are opting to rent out their condominium unit to meet mortgage payments. This case demonstrates how building residential neighborhoods requires more than housing, with urban planners and decision-makers needing to recognize the importance of social services, amenities, and employment opportunities, particularly in low-resource settings. Despite accommodating over one million residents in new public housing developments, Addis Ababa continues to have a significant housing shortage.