New Legislation Coming to Govern Common Areas


The Government will be vigorously pursuing the preparation of new legislation to govern the maintenance and management of common areas in gated communities, town house complexes and commercial complexes.

"This legislation will be similar to the recently promulgated Strata Titles Act which governs the management of apartment complexes," Minister of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change, Hon. Robert Pickersgill, said during his contribution to the 2012/13 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives, on July 24.

The Minister also informed that research has commenced to formulate the proposals for the new legislation, and a policy document will be prepared by his Ministry in conjunction with the Real Estate Board.

"This policy document will inform the preparation of the drafting instructions for the new legislation before the end of the financial year," Mr. Pickersgill said.

On another matter, Mr. Pickersgill said the need for a review of residential density zoning standards in Jamaica is a major issue.

He noted that the increase in urbanisation as well as population demand has placed additional stress on the allocation and uses of land.

"The rapid expansion of urban centresand the finite land resources bring to light the need to review existing residential density standards as an integral part of Jamaica's spatial development strategy," the Minister said.

He added that there is a need to increase densities, especially in the urban areas, to maximise the use of scarce land resources and to take advantage of economies of scale in respect of infrastructural investments, such as central sewerage systems and mass transit. 

To this end, the Ministry, in conjunction with the National Environment and Planning Agency, is currently preparing a policy paper for revised residential development densities in Jamaica.

The paper will inform the preparation of new density standards for urban areas for approval by the Town and Country Planning Authority and the Cabinet, after the solicitation of comments and recommendations from the relevant stakeholders.

JIS Social