Shanghai will expand a trial program to tear down old buildings that cannot be saved by repairing and renovating, housing authorities said yesterday at a meeting with political advisers.
The government-sponsored practice will be adopted as a new approach in old residential community renovation, according to Jin Chen, secretary-general of Shanghai Housing and Urban-Rural Construction and Management Commission.
"It has been trialed in about 20 residential complexes around the city, which helped us and other government departments to work out related policies and fund resources," said Jin.
The buildings involved had become so outdated that residents had to share kitchens, bathrooms and other facilities, and renovations to improve living conditions were not feasible.
Assessments of the buildings confirmed that they were in a state of disrepair and had no preservation or protection value.
After they are replaced by new buildings, original residents can move back and the government will use the remaining properties as a low-cost housing resource.
The government will also simplify processes to expand the practice of replacing old with new to the 145 million square meters of old public housing rented by more than four million households, said Jin.
About 500,000 square meters of such residential buildings — deemed to be beyond saving — were planned to be torn down and replaced over the period from 2016 to 2020, he added.
There are more than 600 million square meters of residential housing in Shanghai, a third of which were built before 2000.
The government has invested more than 5 billion yuan (5 million) from 2011 to 2015 to repair and renovate 70 million square meters of old buildings, benefiting more than 1 million households.
About 5 million square meters are planned for renovation over the next five years.