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Municipality puts freeze on 18-meter high house permits

Starting today, the property owner must redesign the house according to the ministry’s decision, which stipulates a height of 15 meters

The municipality’s new decision eliminates the ‘stairwell house’ design, extends the staircase to only the second floor, removes spaces like the machine room and 100 square meters of roof area, leaving the house with a ground floor, first floor, and part of the second floor, without any extra space.

A reliable source disclosed that starting today, Sunday, the municipality will cease approving house designs with a height of 18 meters, as per the objection of Dr. Noura Al-Mashaan, the Minister of Public Works and Minister of State for Municipal Affairs, to certain building regulations. Instead, building permits will now require a minimum height of 20 meters, according to the municipality’s directive.

The source explained, “Accordingly, the property owner must redesign the house according to the minister’s decision, which stipulates a height of 15 meters. This will entail the citizen bearing the cost of the new design as well.”

“He pointed out that Al-Mashaan’s decision would result in “canceling the so-called ‘stairwell house,’ with the staircase extending only to the second floor.

Additionally, it would eliminate additional spaces like the machine room and 100 square meters of roof area, resulting in a house consisting of a ground floor, the first, and part of the second floor” without any remaining surface.

Dr. Hassan Kamal, head of the joint committee between the technical and financial and legal committees in the municipal council, confirmed to Al-Rai newspaper that ‘Minister Al-Mashaan’s objections have not yet reached the council.’

Nasser Jadaan Al-Azmi, a member of the Municipal Council, told Al-Rai, “The minister’s decision has set us back, especially since the joint committee held 15 meetings with the executive branch. It would have been better for the minister to express her views before the council’s decision.”

MP Fayez Ghannam Al-Jumhur viewed the minister’s objection to the Municipal Council’s decision to allow citizens to increase the construction height in private housing to 20 meters as a misplaced objection. He found it surprising to encounter such illogical objections, especially given the rise in land prices and inflation affecting property prices.



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