Housing in Libya: 1950–1980∗

Housing in Libya: 1950–1980∗

HABI~‘ATINTL Vol IJ.No Prmred I” Great Bntatn I.pp 0197-3975/90$3.00 + 0 00 Pergamon Press plc 55-X5, 1990 Housing in Libya: 1950-1980'" ADENRELE...

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Vol IJ.No Prmred I” Great Bntatn


0197-3975/90$3.00 + 0 00 Pergamon Press plc

55-X5, 1990

Housing in Libya: 1950-1980'" ADENRELE AWOTONA? Huddersfield

Polytechnic, UK


According to the Report of a United Nations’ mission to the Libyan Arab Republic in 1973 to assess the requirements of the Government for United Nations assistance in the development of her cities and villages, physical planning was almost unknown in Libya before the discovery and development of oil. Since then, however, the country has endeavoured to fashion a physical framework within which economic and social development could take place. Extensive assistance from the United Nations and numerous international consulting firms which were commissioned to prepare Plans for the country’s five Planning Regions resulted in 30 comprehensive Master Plans and 154 Outline Plans. The aim of this paper is to review the various housing programmes in Libya during the first three decades of the post-independence era. Although an attempt is made to examine the evolution of Government policies in the housing sector, the central emphasis is on the place of housing in each of the six National Development Plans from 1951 to 1980. The paper notes that notwithstanding the fact that Libya is a socialist country, private sector contribution to social housing in Libya is in fact quantitatively more than that of the public sector and proportionately higher after the 1969 revolution than before.


Libya’s social. political and governmental system has undergone a series of changes since 1951. the year of her political independence from Italy. Throughout this period, the country’s housing production and delivery mechanisms have directly reflected those dynamic transitions. Thus, political and financial commitment to housing provision has changed with the different stages in the country’s development. This paper reviews housing programmes and construction in Libya during the first three decades of the post-independence era. The paper comprises three main sections. The first focuses on the immediate post-independence period (1951-1962) prior to oil revenues, when the quantitative housing need was acute and construction figures remained low. In the second section. the beginning of the new era of deliberate public participation in the process of housing policy formulation and implementation (1963-1969) is examined: public sector commitment to the housing sector was initially low but then began to gain in importance. The third section looks at the post-revolution *The data for this study were collected while the author was on a research leave at the Department of Urban Planning, Umversity of Garyounls, Benghazi. Libya. t Address for correspondence. School of Architecture. The Polytechnic of Huddersfield. Queensgate. Huddersfleld HDI 3DH. UK


years of 1969-1980 when public sector housing construction with the active participation of the organised private sector. These three periods are reviewed in turn below.





Libya entered its early post-independence era with an acute housing shortage in both its major cities and in the rural regions. Amongst the most serious of the housing problems were the following: quantitative housing deficit; a substantial stock of substandard dwellings; lack of proper maintenance of the existing stock which were in reasonably good condition: lack and inadequate distribution of community buildings and facilities; the proliferation of slums; unplanned development of cities. towns and villages; high cost of urban land; severe shortage of technical and skilIed labour for the construction industry; shortage of private capital; shortage and high cost of building materials; the high rate of population growth: massive urban-ward migration; and, the special housing needs of nomads (who constituted about 21% of the total population). In 1962. a Family Budget Survey for Tripoli Town revealed conditions of harsh overcrowding: 46% of the people were living at densities of 4 or more persons per room; 39% at densities of 2-4 persons per room; and only 15% at below 2 persons per room (Doxiadis, 1964a). Similarly. 45.300 dwelling units (24% of the national housing stock) were dilapidated structures, lacked minimum facilities and were constructed of materials of very limited life-span. Of these 24,900 were situated in the urban centres and 20.400 in the rural areas. Furthermore, 36,200 units (19% of the national housing stock) were in need of major improvements such as the addition of sanitary facilities, repair of roofs, and so on. About 12.900 units were in the urban centres and 23.300 in the rural areas. Studies also showed that even if it was assumed that the total national stock of 189,000 dwelling units were of acceptable standard, one out of every four families had no dwelling unit (Doxiadis. 1964a). With regards to the shortage and high cost of building materials, the local production accounted for only about 20% of all the building materials used in the country (Stroller, 1962). With the exception of earth, stone, limestone, lime, hollow concrete blocks, bricks and tiles, all the other materials used for building construction such as cement, glass ceramic tiles, electric installations, sanitary fittings, timber, asphait and so on, were being imported. Consequently. the prices of such materials were high. For example. in the urban areas, dwelling cost was about 300 Libyan Pounds per room for low-cost dwellings, 400-500 Libyan Pounds per room for middle-cost dwellings and 600-800 Libyan Pounds per room for luxury apartments or villas. These were clearly beyond the financial means of the vast majority of the population since 64% of all Libyan families belonged to the low-income group (annuat household income less than or equal to 360 Libyan Pounds). 30’; to the middIe-income group (annual income less than or equal to 1,080 Libyan Pounds} and only 6% to the high-income category (annual family income more than 1.080 Libyan Pounds). In the rural areas, 80% of the families belonged to the low-income group, and 20% to the middleincome group. Furthermore, the national per capita income at that time was about 100 Libyan Pounds. Although the housing conditions were difficult as briefly illustrated above, the Government did not intervene in the housing sector. It did not create any institutional or legislative machinery to facilitate new housing provision. In 1956, the Government passed a law which recognised the importance of housing cooperatives and also published regulations under which co-operatives may be


m Libya,



chartered, but no significant progress was made in this direction. By 1962, only two housing co-operatives had been formed in Libya - one each in Tripoli and Benghazi. The latter was formed in 1960 under the name of “Al-Naldah Housing Co-operative” and had a membership of 900 in 1961 whilst the one in Tripoli had 100 members. The overall impact of these bodies was insignificant mainly because of the scant resources of the co-operatives themselves and general lack of support from the Banks and other credit organisations. In 1952, the First Six-Year National Development Plan (1952-1958) was approved. This stressed the reconstruction of war damage, public works and public utilities; training, education, agricultural research, experiment, demonstration and improvement; and the restriction of population growth (Allan, 1981, p. 73). Housing construction, then, although desperately needed, was limited having been left to the people themselves. Construction of private houses in the rural areas was undertaken entirely by the owners while those in the urban centres were undertaken by general contractors. Table 1 illustrates the private building activity in Tripoli from 1957 to 1962. In the urban centres, the rate of house building was largely hampered by shortage of construction firms and labour. For example, there were only 146 contractors registered in the Department of Public Works in Tripoli in 1962. In Benghazi, only 112 construction firms registered as eligible to undertake construction works in that year although its population was about 140,000 inhabitants (Doxiadis, 1964b). These were grossly inadequate when it is noted that at that time there were, in Tripoli alone, 350 large scale manufacturing establishments (with 20 or more workers) which employed over 7,300 persons (67% of the country’s manufacturing employment) and had an output worth 16.5 million Libyan Pounds (81% of the total Libyan gross output). In addition to the bulk of manufacturing industries which were established there, Tripoli also had a very high share in transportation firms, banking, credit and insurance facilities as well as other trade and economic activities. In fact, the per capita income in Tripoli then was 80% above the national average and achieved a proportion of 6:l with that in the district (Mutassarifia) with the lowest income (Gruchman, 1972; 197). The period 1952-1962 was, therefore, characterised by the generally low level of housing construction and the consequent increase in the housing deficit Table





rn Tripoli

City between


and IY6-7

Year Types

of butldmgs

(A) Restdenttal i. Apartment Number Number Area of it.







butldtngs of buildings of apartments sq m

39 195 24.256

26 102 13.S65

31 185 31.127

23 123 13.752

23 170 20.669

1JO 15.626

Villas Number of k~llas Numper of apartments Area m sq. m

115 29X 42.707

158 402 62,429

163 163 25.941

125 315 47,758

78 216 32.713

SO 135 24.769

63 82 10,033

80 96 10.789

98 127 15,162

120 156 18,421

165 216 23.018

726 812 82.181

2x 7.903

42 16.409

28 13.348

37 18.027

65 23.013

809 24.614




iii. Tradtttonal (local) houses Number of houses Number of apartments Area tn sq. m (B) Non-restdenttal Number of uruts Area m sq m Total

area m sq. m



84,899 Abstracts

of Libya,

103.192 1958-1962.





due mainly to a rapid population increase. The annual overall growth rates for the whole country for the period 1958-1961 was 1.8% whilst the natural growth rate was of the order of 2.5%. A United Nations publication in 1959 (Report of the ~rba~~sat~on Survey ~~~sio~ in the Mediterranean Region) gave, for the period of 1927-1949, an average rate of growth of 1% for the rural population and 3% for the urban population. THE SECOND PERIOD: THE EARLY YEARS OF OIL REVENUES (1963-1968)

The housing problems which plagued Libya from 1951 to 1962 endured beyond that period. In 1964, 24% of all the dwelling units in Tripoli city (approximately 8,000 units) and 17% of those in Benghazi (about 3,000 units) were officially classified as slums. The largest slum areas in Benghazi were in Sabri (east of the city) and Dar-el-Kish (south of the city). The total population in these two slum areas alone was estimated at about 17,000 inhabitants. In Derna. 39% (about 700 families) of the total number of families lived in slum dwellings. In Tobruk. mass immigration from rural areas also resulted in the creation of many slum areas there. About 23% of the 2,000 dwelling units in Tobruk town were shacks (Doxiadis, 1964a). In the areas of private-sector housing finance as at September 1963, only 8.9% of the total loans by commercial banks (excluding the Bank of Libya) were credits for building construction while 3% of the total Bank credit was for mortgages for buildings. Moreover, although the average number of persons per household in Libya was five in 1963, a study in one urban area in Tripoli revealed that the room density was four persons in 46% of the situations (Doxiadis, 1964). In 1964, there were two main sources of water supply for all the settlements in Libya: direct supply (when water was obtained from wells, cisterns, springs and open canals); and. indirect supply (piped water distributed either to houses or to public water points). It was estimated that, for the whole country, about 66% of the dwelling units in the cities were supplied with piped water, 49% of the dwellings in towns and 7% of the dwellings in the villages. Electricity was supplied to 75% of the dwellings in cities and 65% of the dwellings in towns, 16% of the dwellings in villages and 9% of the dwellings in farms. Only 33% of the dwellings in the cities, 5% of those in towns and 1% of those in the villages were connected to sewage disposal systems. The remaining of the residential buildings as well as all the farm dwellings used other means of sewage disposal methods such as cesspools. open pits and so on. Indeed, in 1963, Tripoli and Benghazi were the only two cities to have a sewage disposal system. Two towns. Beida and Tobruk, was well as two villages, Zawia and Yefren, also had sewage disposal systems (Doxiadis. 1963a.b). In all the settlements, there was a marked inadequacy of paved streets. In Tripoli and Benghazi, only the major streets and a few side-streets were paved. Similarly, in 1964, there were eight main categories of dwellings in the country, classified according to the principal building materials that they were constructed of. These were: stone masonry in mud mortar: stone masonry in lime mortar; reinforced concrete structure; mud block construction; tin and wood shacks; straw huts: and, dug outs and caves. Approximately 2.0% of the total national dwelling stock, excluding the tents of nomads (who constituted 21% of the total population) were constructed of concrete. 36.0% of stone in lime mortar , 23% of stone in mud mortar, 97~ of mud blocks and 107~ of tin and wood. 3% were caves and 7% were straw huts and tents. According to the study conducted by Doxiadis (1964). the reinforced concrete dwellings were found exclusively in the cities (Tripoli, Suk-el-Giuma and Benghazi) while the majority of the stone dwellings, in either mud or lime mortar were found along the coastal areas and the mountainous zones where

Housing in Libya: 1950-1980


stone is available. The majority of the mud houses were in the areas of Fezzan and Kufra where stone is scarce, while straw huts were found in the agricultural locations of Tripolitania as well as in Fezzan. The dug-outs and caves were characteristic of the Gharian mountainous region. Finally, the tin and wood shacks were found mainly in the cities, in the form of slum dwellings, and in the fast growing coastal areas of Sirte near the oil fields. All the building types, except for the shacks, huts and tents, were interior oriented -the rooms opened into one or more internal courtyards while the dwelling is isolated from the public spaces by a tall enclosure wall, where the entrance gate is the only opening. Figures l-4 illustrate some of the dwelling types described above. In order to meet the quantitative housing shortage, Doxiadis (1964b) estimated that 13,700 dwelling units would need to be constructed every year from 1965 to 1990.

Fig. 1. Exterior views of some traditional housing types in Libya.


Adenrele Awotona

Fig. I


Against the background sketched above, we shall now examine the official response to this marked shortage of housing as contained in the two National Development Plans that were approved during this period.



This Plan stated its seven major objectives as follows (Allan, 1981, pp. 80431): 1. To ensure the early improvement of the standards of living of the people, particularly those of limited income who did not benefit from the economic prosperity.

Housing rn Libya: 1950-1980

Fig. I (Continued.)

Fig. 2. Detads of the matn entrances mto some types of iraditional houses.






2. (Conrmued



m Libya:

Fig. 3. Mosr rradmonal



houses are rnrenor oriented.

2. To give special consideration to the agricultural sector, being the source of supply of most of the essential consumer goods, as well as the source of income and employment for the majority of the people; to improve the productive efficiency of farmer and labourer; and to encourage the private sector to make investments in these fields. 3. To permit the public sector to continue its investments in such services as education, health, communications and housing, together with other sectors as required consolidate the basic elements for rapid economic growth. 4. To develop rural areas by establishing all the production and public service projects, thus ensuring regular employment for countrymen, utilising their productive faculties and raising their incomes in such a way as to achieve


Adenrele Awotona

Ftg. 4 “Modern”

blocks of flats tn Benghazi Ctt)

justice in the distribution of national income and restrict their migration into the cities. 5. To organise the imports policy to avoid importation of all goods which can be produced in the country on the one hand, and to. ensure protection from the danger of inflation and the provision of sufficient supplies of the capital goods needed for development on the other; at the same time striving to set up local production and to adopt an appropriate customs policy for its protections and in this way gradually and continuously substitute local production for the mass of such imports. 6. To take such monetary, financial and commercial measures as may be necessary to ensure increased revenue and to enforce “tight-belt” control on expenditure. 7. To take steps to meet the lack of information and statistical data which are necessary for planning. by strengthening the existing statistical organs and by studies and research work. Of all these above-listed objectives, those specifically relating to housing provision are the primary concern of this paper. The most notable aspect of the Plan was that although the first objective was that of improving the standards of living of the people, “Housing” did not figure in the original Plan as a separate head. However, one major economic event led to a dramatic increase in house construction and the actual expenditure of 9.9% of the 1963-1968 budget for the housing sector (representing 2% of the total oil revenues in the 1963 to 1968 period which were 1,500 million Libyan Pounds). This was the availability of oil revenues which provided additional resources for development. The first significant oil exports from Libya took place in 1962 (7.9 million tons). These then grew each year until they reached 82.5 million tons in 1967, 126 million tons in 1968 and about 150 million tons in 1969. This growth made capital available for investment in all sectors of the national economy. Correspondingly, national income increased from 180 million Libyan Dinars to 820 million Libyan Dinars


Housmg in Libya: 1950-1980

between 1962 and 1969.’ National income per head increased at an annual rate of 17% from 120 Libyan Dinars to 370 Libyan Dinars in the same period; all at 1964 constant prices. Although the government was disinclined to dominate the development process, its participation in national spending on consumption and capital formation together had moved from 20% to 43% between 1962 and 1969 (Allan, 1981, p. 117). Thus, as Gruchman (1972, p. 197) once noted, “Libya was given a unique chance of removing the basic weaknesses of the national economy: of modernizing and diversifying its structure, of building up an infrastructure commensurate with the requirements of a modern state, and of securing for all citizens regardless of where they live equal opportunities to attain high productivity and income. The means of attaining these goals, which are now at the disposal of Libya, are very high in comparison with those available in most of the developing countries”.

Table 2 shows a comparison of the proposed and actual allocations to the various sectors of the economy during the Plan Period. The dramatic increase in the housing stock was a direct result of a combined contribution by both the public and private sectors. In fact, between 1964 and 1970, the total number of houses constructed was 5,217, comprising 2,912 (55%) and 2,305 (44.2%) by the public and private sectors, respectively (Allan, 1981, p, 224). Amongst the public housing projects that were planned and executed were the Idris Housing Estate (Table 3 illustrates the plot area and construction cost of each of these); Popular Housing; and Einzara core Housing. In addition to these, a new town of El Marj was built to house earthquake victims of Barce. Granting of building loans

In addition to constructing housing units for the people, the Government also provided loans to those who were interested in the construction of owneroccupier houses on very easy terms without interest. It also provided fully Table 2. Compartson of the proposed and actual allocatrons WILibya’s hrst Five-Year Plan Period, 1963-1968


Proposed in 1963 fL (million)

Agrtculture Industry National economy Communicattons Public works Education Health Labour and Social Affairs News and Guidance Public Admmistration Planning and Development


Estimated actual expenditure Sectors fL (million)


29.3 6.9 2.9 27.5 38.7 22.4 12.5 8.7 2.6 6.4 11.4

17.3 4.1 1.1 16.2 26.6 13.1 7.4 5.1 1.5 3.8 6.7



Agriculture Industry Economy Communications Public works Education Health Labour and Social Affairs interior Planning and Development Housing Others Total


37.8 14.7 2.9 52.7 87.3 25.9 8.7 13.8 19.8 3.4 29.5 1.8

12.7 4.9 1.0 17.7 29.2 a.7 2.9 4.6 6.7



1.1 9.9 0.6

Source: Allan (1981. p. 84)

‘The Lrbyan pound was renamed the Libyan dinar (LD) in 1969. There was no change of value. The Libyan pound/dinar equivalents have moved as follows: 1951 USS2.80 1.00 pound sterling 1967 USS2.80 1.14 pound sterling 1974 USS3.36 1.40 pound sterling 1988 US$3.48 1.97 pound sterling (4 November 1988).



of floors 142 0 173 0 244 0 115.0 142.0 143.0 124.0 331 0 670

Built area (sq. m)

for Housrng in Libya (1969. pp. 4-5).

1 (bungalow) 1 (bungalow) 1 (bungalow) 1 (bungalow) 1 (bungalow) 1 (bungalow) 1 (bungalow) 4 (block of flats) 8 (block of flats: 32 flats per block)

UnIted Nairons Mlssion

A-4 A-5 A-6 B-3 B-4 B-5 c-4 F-3 and F-4 W-3 and W-4

Type of dwelling


320.0 386 0 750.0 284 0 373.0 500 0 308 0

Plot area (sq. m)

Table 3. Dwellmg types in Idrls Housmg Prolecr cost (If)

3,950 5,000 10.300 3,600 3,950 5,800 4,400 39,000 (per block of 16 flat\) 224,000 (per block)


Housing tn Libya: 1950-1980


developed and serviced plots for its citizens free of cost through the Real Estate Bank. Government enthusiasm and commitment to participate actively in housing provision was, however, hampered by the acute shortage of manpower (skilled and unskilled) in the construction sector. As at the end of 1968, there were only 12 architects and 10 engineers in the Ministry of Housing. The Ministry of Public Works had 20 architects and 19 engineers (United Nations, 1969, p. 14). Thus, these design offices were very much understaffed. In addition to this problem, there were two others. First, although there was a Vocational Training Programme which was being run by a team of International Labour Organisation experts under the auspices of the Libyan Government to train Libyans in important trades, the applicants’ preference for the building trades was extremely low. This situation was further aggravated by the absence of any programme for the training of middle-level supervisors and assistants such as draughtsmen, geometries and building overseers (United Nations, 1969, p. 15). Secondly, different building codes (British, Egyptian, Yugoslavian, USA and so on) were being adopted and applied concurrently for the design and execution of the various housing projects. Obviously, none of these standards was wholly applicable to Libya’s local circumstances. Notwithstanding all the above-listed problems, the main goal during the latter half of this period was to increase construction of new housing particularly in urban centres, to cope with the housing needs created by rural-urban migration, rapid city growth and the envisaged fast industrialisation of the country. For instance, during the period 1953-1963, the population of Tripoli, Benghazi and Ijdebia grew at an average annual rate of 5.6%, 6.5% and lo%, respectively. Urban-ward migration was largely responsible for this (Doxiadis, 1964a). THE SECOND FIVE-YEAR

PLAN: 1968-1973

This Plan was drafted twice: neither time was it implemented due to the prevalent political circumstances. The first proposed Plan was aborted due to a change in the country’s prime ministership while the second was jettisoned by the Revolutionary Command Council which took over the governance of the country in September 1969. Although the Second Plan was never implemented, it is noteworthy that Government had allocated 11.2% of the Budget to the housing sector, reflecting a sustained commitment of active public participation in the housing delivery process. Table 4 compares the First and Second FiveYear Plans’ allocations to the various sectors of the economy. THE THIRD PERIOD: HOUSING IN A SEASON OF ABUNDANCE (1969-1980)

Before we examine the various roles of the Libyan government in housing provision. the housing scene at the beginning of this period shall be very briefly reviewed. The housing scene

In 1969, 365,000 households were living in 300,000 habitable dwelling units (Allan, 1981). This gave a quantitative deficit of 65,000 dwelling units. The 1969-1980 period, being years of assured oil revenues, witnessed the rapid urbanisation of the country. About 50% of its 1973 population (which was a total of 2,290,734) lived in settlements of 20,000 people or more; approximately 51.5% in settlements with over 10,000 inhabitants and about 56% of the


= LL29X 2 mrlhon

Total spent

Note Totals may not equal IOt)ci through Source. Allan (1981, p 93)

= fLl69

‘Totrtl plan allocatron

I mtlhon

74 51 1.5 6.7

26.6 13 1



17.7 29.2 a7 2.9 4.6 6.7 1.1 9.9 0.6

11 I6 2


National Economy Communication5 Public Works Educatron Public Health Labour and Social Affarrs News and Guidance Planning and Development Housing Other

QXllt 12 7 49


IOf%196% “i

17 3 41




Frr\t Fete-Year


Agrrculture Industry Economy and Trade Transport and Communications Pubhc Works Educatron Public Health Labour and Social Affairs interior Planning and Development Housing Municipalittes Reserves Tourrsm and Sports Ciwl Service Information and Culture


fL1,149 5 mitlion (Plan not Implemented)

13.1 79 1.4 14 2 15 4 IO 1 4.9 2.0 17 06 11 2 x9 5.0 2.3 0.2 2.6

Frve-Year Plan, 1968-1973 (not implemented) (OJg)




25 0 If) 0 0.2 13 6 8.9 5.5 32 0 2 0.5 0.8 1s 0 12 5 13 0.3 0 1 1 1

First development budget of Revolutionary Government, 1970-1971 (“rc)


m [email protected]:



population lived in settlements with over 5,000 inhabitants (Kezeiri, 1982). Earlier in 1964, the Libyan population had consisted of about 35% urban, 44% settled rural and 21% nomadic and semi-nomadic. The 1973 census recorded a total of 386,782 households for Libya with an average household size of 5.8 persons or 1.l persons per household more than in 1964. The census also gave a country total of 419,000 dwelling units, which were 32,218 more than the number of households. However, the available 1973 census data did not include any information on the number of standard or substandard dwelling units in terms of either structural conditions of the units, number of rooms or available services (lighting, plumbing, and so on). Similarly, the number and location of dwelling units in caves, tents, huts and shacks which were published separately in the 1964 Census had been aggregated into one group in the 1973 Census returns. However, it was estimated that 25.3% of the 1973 housing stock identified in the Census were of substandard quality (Italconsult, 1976, p. 199). Thus, there were 313,000 standard and 106,000 substandard dwelling units in 1973. A wide range of variation existed, though, amongst the Planning Areas. While in the Sirte and Tarhuma Planning Areas, more than one-third of the housing stock was substandard, less than 15% of the stock in Benghazi, Misratah, Tripoli and Sabha fell into this category. Earlier in 1969, a Household Sample Survey had revealed that 31% of all dwellings in Tripoli and 15% of those in Benghazi lacked their own toilet facilities. Based on the above, Italconsult (1976) calculated that the total new dwelling units required between 1973 and 1985 was 295,760 (or 24,647 units per year), whilst the total new dwelling units required between 1985 and 2000 would be 638,560 (or 42,571 units per year). Government participation in the housing process Smith (1971, pp. 389-392) has identified four major alternative roles of government in housing provision to her people. These are: laissez-faire; public entrepreneurship: public governorship; and mixed entrepreneurship. As illustrated in Fig. 5a, “laissez-faire” refers to a market economy in which effective housing demand is addressed to the private sector of the economy and the market rejoins with a provision of dwelling units. Although the public may complain to the government about lapses of the market place (“political data”), the government does not intervene in the housing delivery mechanisms. “Public entrepreneurship” (Fig. 5b) represents a socialised housing sector in which housing is centrally-supplied and housing decisions are made unilaterally by the public sector institutions. Since this is a monopoly approach, the pianning, design and execution of housing programmes take place essentially without reference to consumer demand. Often, the result is that housing services are produced which do not satisfy the cultural and social needs of the vast majority of the people. In the “Public Governorship” system (Fig. 5c), government intervention is limited to ensuring that the housing market performance is as “ideal” as possible through the agency of Regulations such as zoning, tenancy rights, and so on. Mixed entrepreneurship leaves all options open: public and private sectors respond to, and meet, the various housing requirements of the people (Fig. 5d). The Revolutionary Government which came to power in Libya in September 1969 committed itself to the provision of every family with a “suitable, decent house” regardless of the family’s income or location. However, despite the fact that the government decided, in conformity with its socialist principles, to completely socialise the housing sector, it initially gave a lot of encouragement to the private sector to contribute in solving the housing problem through granting it loans, with little or no interest, for housing construction. Thus, the first post-

r 1





























= =

PIarket drmand Statement of ?5ervIces



Pollticdl need







who complalnts fraro those te.y. demand to lack the effective



purchase R











hOu5inQ asszstance


marlet) (zoning.



et<_, Sa








Revolutionary ~~~ee-~e~~ ~~ti~~~~ ~evelo~~e~t Plan f 1973- 1975) aimed at the construction of 90.000 dwelling units by both the public sector (64.000 units) and the private sector (26.000). The period from 1969 to 1980 may. therefore, be subdivided into two parts: 1969-1975 (the era of mixed entrepreneurship) and 1976-1980 (the term of public entrepreneurship). Before we examine these in some detail. it is perhaps necessary, at this juncture, to attempt to define what “social housing” means in the Libyan context. Social housing, as implemented in different countries, vary. The term is synonymous with “public housing” (USA) and “council housing” (Britain) in as much as the destination was originally to provide inexpensive housing for the poorer sections of the population. In West Germany. social housing is “predominantly privately owned. The proportion of housing directly built and owned by the government is still very small and, indeed, has increased from 5% to just above 8% over the last 15 years (1970-1985). Social housing policy revolved around publicly subsidised loans to private investors who, in receiving these benefits, bind themselves to at least a 15 year social rent control, and to a system of allocation of the dwellings by State or local government agencies. The


WI Libya:



investors also subordinate their designs to minimal standards” (Kennedy. 1984. p. 57). Thus, in the West German model, the programme of social housing which was established in 1950 has the following characteristics: introduction of rent control; tenants’ rights in privately financed and publicly supported housing units; provision of reasonably priced dwellings for all population groups; massive housing construction by private investors with public grants and all forms of incentives being provided to private investment also; land speculation and the concentration of housing capital in the hands of a few; and minimum public ownership of housing (Kennedy, 1984, pp. 56-57). Under Germany’s first Housing Act (1950), financial support to house builders consisted of grants and cheap no-interest loans. In the second Housing Act of 1956, loans to the private sector for social housing supply were not directly state monies, but from the normal capital markets with the Government taking on the guarantees for the investors towards the banks. Hence, the policy of social housing in West Germany is aimed at supporting a market-oriented housing sector. It does not define the quantitative goal since the basic postulation is that the market would regulate itself. The prerequisites subjoined to public funds were, therefore, entirely regulative regarding space standards and fittings of the dwelling unit or, in the case of owner-occupiers or housing associations, the amount of the downpayment necessary (Kennedy, 1984, p. 58). In summary, therefore, whereas all publicly financed housing is publicly owned, public investment in West Germany into the 1970s produced two main categories of social housing: social housing with capital subsidies; and social housing with interest subsidies. In Libya, social housing is an instrument for the redistribution of national wealth in the country. Housing policy is not an end in itself, but a means of satisfying broad national social, political and economic objectives. Part Two of the “Green Book” (Qathafi, 1974) was primarily concerned with the realisation of the principles of “the right to housing” and its importance for housing policy. The right to housing is not a new concept. On 10 December 1948, the General Assembly of the United Nations endorsed and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Article 25 of the Declaration begins: “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services . . .“. This assertion of the right to housing as an elementary social right took the form of a declaration. While there are many ways to interpret this declaration, the Libyan government adopted the notion that government guarantees that adequate housing, like schooling, will be available to all regardless of the family’s income or ability to pay for housing. In order to ensure this right in terms of the social aims and egalitarian aspects of housing policy, the following steps, amongst others, were put into effect: the development and upkeep of State and socially-owned housing; provision of assistance for co-operative and individual house-building; equitable distribution, under public control. of the housing that becomes available through mass housing production; and enforcement of low rents. Thus. the broad goals of housing policies and the location of the housing sector in the national economy were to be decided in the course of the general planning process. Similarly, the resolution of such issues as housing investment in absolute terms and as a percentage of investment in other zones of the national economy, the volume of construction, the quality and standards of the housing built, the level of housing costs in general (including the level of rents and other circumstances that control the population’s outlay on housing) became the responsibility solely of the State and its planning agencies. The implementation of the “Green Book” policies did lead to a marked redistribution of property, or at least to the access of individuals to houses and flats at modest rents (Allan. 1981, pp. 222-226). However, Table 5 discloses that

Adenrele Aworona

72 Table 5. Housmg complenons

b_vIhe pubkc and private secfors from 1964 IO 1977

Public sector

Prwate sector No. %




1970171 1971172 1972173 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977

3,012 3,891 6.651 4.650 12.633 10.595 12,744 5,924

50.5 40.9 44.9 26.7 40.6 37.5 48.0 48.1

2.957 5.634 8.173 12.754 18,480 17.682 13,800 6.401

Annual rates 1964/69 1969175 1973175

2.912 5.919 9.293

55.8 37.6 36.3

2.305 9,826 16.305

Total No


49.5 59.1 55.1 73.3 59 4 62.5 52 0 51 9

5.969 9,525 14,824 17.304 31.113 28.277 26.544 12.325

100.0 100.0 100.0 loo.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0

44.2 62 4 63.7

5.217 15.745 25.598

100.0 100.0 100.0

Source: UNDP (1977, p. 22)

contrary to the popular view that housing in Libya is wholly centrallyconstructed and government-managed, the private sector “not only yielded more house completions than the public sector but private sector activity was proportionately higher after the revolution than before” (Allan, 1981, p. 224). In 1976, private speculation in building houses and flats for rent was finally prohibited by law. The Revolutionary Government was not only strongly committed to the rapid growth of the housing sector; it ensured that the allocation of the housing units was more equitable than in the past. Tables 6 and 7 illustrate how the commitment to building houses was reflected in budgetary allocations to the housing sector from 1969 to 1980. The volume of expenditure allocated to housing expanded substantially from LD32.8 million in 1970 to LD185 million in 1977, reflecting a proportional allocation of 16.4% in 1970 and 12.2% in 1977. Like housing policy, housing finance policy was derived from socio-economic dogma and development. The inclusion of housing in the overall system of economic, social and physical planning subordinated housing policy and financing policy to such plans. Indeed, the Libyan State performed a dual role in pursuance of its housing finance and construction policy: firstly, as originator of this policy and the central authority responsible for deciding policy tendencies within the context of both social interests and the concerns of socio-economic and physical development; and secondly, as investor and manager, since State organisations played a direct economic role in the building sector and in the utilisation and management of the housing stock. It should be noted, however, that even in pre-Revolutionary years, budgetary allocations to housing in National Development Plans also rose more rapidly than in any other sector. In fact, by 1969, allocations to housing had become the highest constituent in the development finances.

1969-1975: the era of mixed entrepreneurship During this period, the market was allowed to satisfy the effective demand for housing subject to regulations by government. Public agencies also provided housing directly. The government organisations which were responsible for housing construction were: 1. The General Housing Corporation Housing;


directly by the Minister of

Figures Source:


may not total correctly Allan (1981. p 188).



Agriculture and Agrarran reform Integrated agricultural developments Industry and Mineral Resources Petroleum and Utilisation of gas Public Works (after 1972 - Electricity) Transport and Communications Education Public Health Labour force Social affairs and Socral Securrty Housing Economy (from 1974 - Trade) Tourism, Antiqurties and Sport Baladiya (Municipahties) Planning Reserve Nutrition and Sea wealth Sea transport Interior and Securtty Services




145 0

200 0



1.3 32.8 0.1 2.9 25.5 0.4 2.4

2.0 22 2 0.3 8.4 13.0 07 1.5



18.4 27.1 II 4 5.9

24.9 22.6 14.6 7.4

300 0


40 0 5.6 5.3 29.2 1.6 2.0

50.4 32.0 21.6 21.5 39.8 27.2 17.0


50.0 20.5


16.4 7.9







92.8 56.1 23.2 71.7 35.5 36.8 9.3





70.5 loo.4 90.2 64.7 81.4 67.1 60.2 16.5 7.4 8.5 100.0 3.5 8.5 55.0 2.1 3.9 0.0 111.1 165.8 142.5 90.0 116.6 87.5 112.0 35.3 7.3 9.5 150.5 6.3 19.8 109.9 7.6 23.5 8.8 70.9 10.0 1285.0

1 I 10.0


100.1 131.0 138.7 83.8 114.3 72.4 110.0 25.2 9.1 6.9 130.0 3.4 8.1 95.9 8.5 5.3 3.9 63.4 0.0


(LD mdlron)


Plans. 1969-1980


61.1 4R.0 22.9 62.3 39.2 32.7 14.0


6. Alloca~rot~s of Narronal Development


104.1 176.1 190.7 95.0 152.8 121 6 120.9 45.1 11.6 4.3 185.0 5.0 21.2 125.0 3.6 33.3 14.0 73.3



445.3 781.3 1089.7 648.2 543.6 632.1 470.4 171.4 41.8 43.2 794.2 32.7 91.3 552.7 56.7 325.3 41.4 373.5 35.0



Adenrele A wotona


m Libya:



2. The Ministry of Land Reclamation and Development (which was previously known as the Agricultural Development Council); 3. The Ministry of Agriculture; 4. The National Investment Company; 5. The Religious Board; 6. The General Board of Social Security. The General Housing Corporation. This was established in 1970 and was responsible, under the supervision of the Secretary of Housing for the implementation of the largest number of public dwelling units. The Corporation as well as the Secretariat were faced with many problems, the most significant of which was the inadequacy of the quantity and quality of technical personnel specialised in the preparation of housing plans, their implementation and followup. Although the number of technical schools rose from six in 1968-1969 to nine in 1973-1974, Libya had to recruit all categories of building construction workers from abroad in order to implement her housing programmes. For example, in 1972, expatriates constituted 80% of all engineers working in the country while the percentage was 77.5 in 1975. Similarly, 72.4% of engineering technicians were expatriates in 1972 and 74.8% in 1975. Building craftsmen comprised 57.1% expatriates in 1972 and 63.5% in 1975 (Fergiani, 1976). Difficulties in collecting accurate and up-to-date data on the housing sector and in their analysis also constituted a major problem for the Corporation for which external assistance was constantly needed. In spite of these difficulties, the Corporation was responsible for the construction of 45,216 dwelling units during the years 1972-1976. This represented about 33% of the total number of dwellings constructed in the country (137,043 units) and 83% of those built by the public sector (54,463 units). Ministries of Land Reclamation and Agriculture. These two bodies constructed dwelling units within their agricultural and pastural projects. The number of dwellings for which contracts were signed by the end of 1975 were 14,365. In 1976, 5,671 units were constructed. The other organisations. The National Investment units while the Religious Board built 62.

Company constructed


Overall Public Housing Policy

In addition to directly participating in the construction of housing units, public housing policy also included the following (UNDP, 1977, pp. 29-30): The Urban Evolution Act of 1972 prohibited the speculation in open lands suitable for building. It defined the prices of private land situated within town planning areas which were needed for public projects. The prices were defined for the year 1964, to be raised by 5% every year thereafter. The 1972 Act also imposes a yearly tax of 2.5% of its price on the open land in excess of 1,600 sq. m from an owner’s land on condition that he does not own other suitable land to build his house on. In August 1974, the Council of Ministers issued a Regulation which spelt out the conditions under which government building lands could be sold. For example, a buyer has to pay the total land cost if it does not exceed LD500. If it does, LD500 deposit is mandatory, the rest being repaid in equal monthly instalments over a three-year period. Renting public dwellings. Families whose total monthly

LD30 are exempted

income is less than from paying rents. Others pay rents set out as follows:



0 0 0


5% of a monthly income which does not exceed LD90; 10% of a monthly income between LD91 and LD120; and 15% of a monthly income above LD120.

As a rule, during the period under study, public dwelling units were rented to persons who met at least one of the following requirements: 1. 2. 3. 4.

He must be married. A widower with children. He did not own a public dwelling unit. He had not been granted a loan from the Bank for the purpose of building a house. 5. He did not have a suitable living accommodation. Private Sector contribution. During the 1972-1975 period. credit loans for industrial and housing projects were one of the avenues used by the government to stimulate the private sector to play a vibrant part in industrial and real estate development. The Industrial Credit Bank offered many loans and conducted studies for many industrial and housing projects. Under the 1973-1975 Development Plan, some LD71 million were allocated for industrial and real estate credit. Allan (1981, pp. 221-227) has shown that before the revolution, Libya like other oil-funded economies, directed a large proportion of oil revenues to the salaries of government officials as well as to housing loans and these monies financed the boom in private housing before the revolution, and an equivalent policy more than sustained the rate of private house completions after the revolution. Private sector housing activities were undertaken by the following, amongst others: 1. The Department of Co-operative Housing. 2. Industrial and Real Estate Bank which was concerned primarily with lending activities for owner-occupier housing. 3. Central and Commercial Banks which also provided loans for owneroccupier housing. During the period 1969-1975, the total number of dwelling units completed throughout the country was 110,212. Table 5 shows that public sector share amounted to 37.6% whilst the private sector contributed 62.4% of the total housing units constructed. The United Nations Development Programme (1977, p. 28) has observed that the public achievements rate during the 1973-1975 Plan years did not exceed 43.6% in number of what was envisaged and 56% in cost. During the same period, however, the rate of private sector achievements was 188% in number and 231% in cost. Table 8 illustrates that the annual rate of loans granted by the six public Banks (Industrial and Real Estate and five commercial Banks) which were undertaking the financing of houses built by the private sector during the 1973-1975 Plan Period were almost six times those granted during the years 1969-1973. It also shows that the annual rate of loans granted during the years 1969-1973 were twelve times those granted during the years 1964-1969. In 1975. loans granted to the various income groups were: LD7,300 to a low-income family; a maximum of LD12.000 from commercial banks or LD16,OOO from the Co-operative Department to a member of other higher-income groups. The loans which were interest-free from 1976, were repayable in 25 years (UNDP, 1977, pp. 25-26). During the 1969-1975 period, the Housing Co-operative Societies were generously subsidised by the Government in the following ways (UNDP, 1977, pp. 26-27):

Source: UNDP (1977, p.25).

4.2 17.3 13.7 21.9



Annual rates 1964169 1969175 1969173 1973175

5.8 10.1 16.4 22.3 15.5 36.6 13.6

1969170 1970171 1971172 1972i73 1973 1974 1975





12.3 14.9 5.5

Real estate bank To low-income groups Low-cost “Shack dwellers” -__

15.0 2.2 32.1



4.2 22.0 13.7 32.8

0.6 8.1 21.5 35.0 40.0

5.8 10.1 16.4 22.3 27.8 51.5 19.1

2.3 5.4






0.4 46 18

25.1 2.2 55.7



68 0.0 15.9

0.6 8.3 29.0 66.2 72.0


0.2 7.1 26.6 13.9

Loans granted by various banks for housing construction (LD million) Commercial banks To medium-income Blocks Low-income groups Co-operative Total groups “shack dwellers” of flats housing

Table 8. Loans granted by various banks for housing construction from 1964 lo 1975

4.2 47.1 15.9 88.5


5.8 10.1 17.0 30.6 56.8 117.7 91.1

Grand total




1. Administrative subsidies for renting office places; for paying wages and salaries of the Society’s employees; and for the purchase of office furniture. 2. A subsidy equalling the total interests of loans taken for the purchase of land necessary for housing projects. 3. The Government provided, free-cost, detailed site layout plans as well as various house design types to the Co-operative Society. 4. The Government provided the housing sites with public utilities at no cost whatsoever to the Society. 5. The Government paid a subsidy, ranging from 257~ to 50%. for the building materials needed to build agricultural houses and dwelling units which were constructed in locations far removed from urban or wellestablished rural centres. 6. Housing Co-operative Societies were exempted from all taxes and fees. Loans which were granted to build co-operative houses amounted to LD16.2 million in 1975 and LD25 million in 1976. The Housing Co-operative Societies acted as investors in addition to utilising and managing the housing stock. This was in contrast to the role of housing co-operatives in other socialist countries. For example, in Bulgaria (and Hungary up to 1971), co-operative activity is limited to the management of building sold by the state. In the Soviet Union. cooperatives perform the functions of investors, while management is carried out by the People’s Councils (United Nations Economic Commission for Europe, 1980, p. 1961). 1976-l 980: the period of public entrepreneurship Consequent upon the publication of the “Green Book”. new political circumstances arose which led to the change in the tendency in housing investment through the remodelling in the internal economic ambience. Hence. the overall planning system within which the housing construction industry operated during this period had three essential features: central economic planning; state house management: and de facto state control of all real estate. It is within this social-political-economic framework then, that housing policy has been formulated and house construction and occupation have taken place on the ground. A radical change in housing policy was approved which included a land reform programme involving a restructuring of both property boundaries and property ownership. Public housing provision became the most important socialpolitical task of the Government and was given an elevated position in the economy as a whole. This should be viewed not only as a direct response to the housing deficit, but also as an attempt to further redistribute national wealth. By 1977. a National Housing Programme had been drawn up which aimed at “solving the housing problem” once and for all. The Five-Year Development Plan of 1976-1980 envisaged the construction of 150.000 dwelling units during this period as a part of the total needs until the year 1990 which were estimated as 562,000 dwelling units covering the following requirements (UNDP, 1977, p. 35): l l

l l

l l

48.000 units to cover the housing deficit at the end of 1975; 6,000 units to cover the replacement of the balance of the dwelling units existing in 1975: 50,000 units to replace shacks and caves; 92,000 units to cover revolving replacement needs during the years from 1976 to 1980: 362.000 units for the increase in the number of families; 4.000 units for meeting nucleus families’ needs.


Housing tn Libya: 1950-1980 Table 9. Housing construction activities by public and private sectors’ agencies: X976-1980 and 1976 197611980 No. of


Sector organization and project Public sector The General Housing Corporation (GHC) General housing project Industriahsed project Sebha project Agricultural housing prolect Integrated villages Other housing projects


Allocations (LD million)

No. of dwellings

Allocations (LD million)

36,474 9,700 9,618 3,000 9,000 3,000

231.3 82.1 74.5 27.7 140.0 30.0

7,337 800 1,218 345 l&Q0

44.0 15.5 19.0 4.0 30.0 2.0





5,250 1,300 3,208


3,300 270 130


Total (Public Sector)





Private sector Co-operative Societies Individuals Self-Help Efforts

4,800 60,ooo 4,650

50.0 360.0 20.0

1,500 11,100

25.0 65.0

Total (Private Sector)









Total (GHC) Agricultural development Investment Company Other Organisattons’ projects

Grand Total (Housing Sector) Source: UNDP (1977, p. 36).

This meant that by the year 1980, a housing shortage still existed with a need to replace 46,000 shacks. Table 9 shows the role of the various public and private authorities in the plan execution during the years 1976-1980 and the year 1976.


The advent of the 1980s marked a deceleration in growth in total housing construction in Libya and a decline, in numerical terms, in state-aided construction. There are several reasons for this decline in the housing construction industry, but essentially it reflects a crisis in demand rather than supply. Rural-urban migration was less marked from the late 1970s onwards, as the quantitative housing and other material circumstances of rural inhabitants improved dramatically. This major factor, amongst others, has contributed to a drying up of demand for housing at the middle to lower end of the market, at the moment. Before the discovery of oil, Libya was essentially a poor agricultural society with large trade deficits. She, therefore, entered its post-independence era with an acute housing shortage in its major cities and in the rural regions. In quantitative terms alone, this housing requirement had been largely met by 1980 due to the fact that in the mid-1970s the country’s Gross National Product was about LD3,500 million. Nevertheless, certain observations and qualifications need to be expressed. The emphasis and design of public housing during the three decades under review changed several times. The early public housing estates epitomized the modest internal dimensions, rationality of street layout, and general low rise development (maximum of four floors) that satisified the social and cultural needs of the Libyan family. The introduction of industrialised building HAB 14:1-F


Adenrele A wof5na

techniques and construction of high-rise blocks of flats at the beginning of the 1970-1980 period, however, set the planning and design standards for statesponsored housing throughout that period and beyond. Over that period as a whole, the public housing estates tended to become larger, in terms of dwellings constructed, and higher as regards the number of floors per block. In Benghazi, for example, the high-rise public housing in El-Salmani Sabkha have 11 floors, whilst others such as El-Sabri, Kish, 23 July and Sabila have seven or eight floors. These high-rise blocks of flats, many of which are technically of very high quality, lack the historic scale or facade characteristic of Arab architecture. They also reflect neither the traditional Islamic planning concept which stresses the idea of close interrelation between the various aspects of life nor the Islamic concern for privacy in the residential quarters. Furthermore, since the design of these mass housing high-rise blocks were stimulated by industrial aesthetics and hence controlled by the criteria of standardised architectural products and of mechanised urban life, the features of these buildings are not interconnected with the human being and his needs, but to the concerns of the urban machinery they are components of. Although the quantitative need of the vast majority of the population would appear to have been met and most of the necessary supporting infrastructure (water supply, sewers, roads, electricity, health, welfare and other social services) provided, the future housing requirements are still likely to be immense. The reason for this is clear. The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (1966) once estimated that the average technical life of a dwelling is about 40 years: 50 years in the cities and large towns, 33 years in the medium-size towns, and 20 years in the rural areas. The value in the rural areas is low due to the large incidence of traditional and sub-standard houses. Various studies by International Consultants have indicated that, indeed, by the year 2000.41% (on the average) of the 1981 housing stock in Libya would be in need of replacement (Finnmap Oy Consultants, 1981). Table 10 illustrates proportions of the 1981 housing stock that would have to be replaced in all the five Baladiya (Municipalities) in the Sabha Region of the country. Tables 11 and 12 are detailed breakdowns of this replacement need in two of these Municipalities: Murzuq Baladiya and Ash Shati Baladiya, respectively. Table 13 is a summary of the estimated needs for the whole country based on a study conducted by Italconsult (1976, p. 200). It shows that the total number of dwelling units that Libya would need by the year 2000 is 1,200,OOO. Against this background of massive numerical need in the coming years, it will be desirable that future housing policy be more deliberately concerned with the development of housing environments which reflect the essence of the Libyan way of life and Arabic architectural traditions. A conscious effort would also need to be made at planning with the inhabitants and at organising a change Table 10 ffousmg


1981 Population

Awbarl Murzuq Sabha Ash Shatl Al Jufrah Total Source:

conditions m the Sabha Region

1981 Housing stock

Adequate No.


Housing condmons Quality of dwelhng untts To be replaced up to 2000 A.D. No c/c

by 2000 A.D %

39.130 33.830 49,230 41.260 23.320

6,457 5,704 9,434 7,305 3,430

2,690 2,744 7,659 3,874 2.187

42.0 48.0 81.0 53.0 64.0

3,767 2.960 1,775 3.431 1,243

58.0 52.0 19.0 47.0 36.0




59 0




from vartous


in Finnmap Oy Consultants (1981).

En Jaran Tsawah Agar Atabah Tegrutin Umm Al Hamman Marhaba Al Sbitat Dujal Murzuq Marzuq ProJect Haj Hujeil Qawat Dlem Zizau Fungul Al Ayn Makhaten Ed Disah Al Baydan Al Gleb Ben Dliff Maafen Al Jabbar Tragham AZ Zaytunah Tawilat Maghwah


2:: 240 215 240 2,935 250 240 295

40.5 1,645 1,590 180 460 435 835 61.5 6,290 175 620 155 810 830 415 40 215 160

1981 Population

in Murzuq

E 65 109 100 406 0 68 25 130 114 66 7 40 30 15 45 45 40 45 127 46 45 55

6.0 99.0

7.0 0.0 0.0 12.0 0.0 60.0 100.0 31.0 0.0 0.0 14.0 13.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 77.0 0.0 0.0 0.0

15 234 2 0 0 15 0 601 28 31 0 0 19 10 0 0 0 0 8 0 0 419 0 0 0





100.0 94.0 1.0 93.0 100.0 100.0 88.0 100.0 40.0 0.0 69.0 100.0 100.0 86.0 87.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 23.0 100.0 100.0 100.0

100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 70.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 open lake 100.0 100.0 100.0 shallow well and open lake 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0


Water supply Dwellings served directly and/or by stand-pipes (Source: wells)

Housing conditions

conditions in all the 50 sertlemena

Quality of dwelling units To be replaced by 2000 A.D. Adequate up to 2000 A.D. No. % No. %

Table 11. Housing




100.0 100.0 100.0 50.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 20.0 30.0 80.0 100.0


100.0 0.0 100.0 15.0 100.0 100.0 90.0 80.0 100.0 IOO.0 30.0


20.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 20.0 0.0 0.0 0.0

0.0 0.0 0.0

0.0 0.0

0.0 0.0 100.0

Sewerage Dwellings served by sewerage septic network tanks (%I (%)





2.230 1,015 1,125 720 2,150 105 1,130 2,430 800 300 1.530 130 830 520 2.475 2,040 1,500 160 1,505 610 1.720 2,950 2,420 8,650 1,560 50 20 105 480 0 3,874

0 0 30 297


Ill 12 16 23 IO0 0 48 364 30 18 18 0 0 33 343 227 I06 0 96 18 123 195 205 1,320 141


34.0 8.0 10.0 22.0 32.0 0.0 23.0 79.0 20.0 31.0 6.0 0.0 0.0 38.0 83.0 66.0 42.0 0.0 42.0 0.0 20.0 47.0 44.0 56.0 79.0 47.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 33.0 100.0 3,431

213 136 148 82 213 20 164 94 120 40 269 25 140 55 72 116 147 25 132 74 137 252 161 341 159 10 4 20 62 0

Oualitv of dwelhng units Adequate up to 2000 A.D To bereplaced No. 9% No.


92.0 90.0 78.0 68.0 100.0 77.0 21.0 80.0 69.0 94.0 loo.0 lob.0 62.0 17.0 34.0 58.0 100.0 58.0 80.0 53.0 56.0 44.0 21.0 53.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 67.0 0.0



by 2UOOA.D.

100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0

Water supply Dwellings served directly and/or bv stand-nipes (Source: wells)’ (%)

Housing conditions

condtttons in all 30 settlements in Ash Shati Baladiya

Source: Compiled from various sections in Finnmap Oy Consultants (1981, pp. 166-209).

Grand total

ldri Mansoura Tmessan Hatiyah Wanzarik Wanzarik Gasr Al Araissiah Zahra Barqan Bu Qadqud Al Gullah Qattah Ayn Mashasha Tarout Ed Disah Al Qardah Mahrugah Al Oyoun Ayn Azzima Aqar Hai Mashasha Gogam Tamzawah Zueia Brak Qirah Hatiyah Debdeb Debdeb Abu Ghardigah Ashkidah BraWAshkidah Project


1981 Population

Table 12. Housing

100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 80.0 100.0 100.0 20.0 70.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 loo.0 85.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0


100.0 loo.0 90.0

10.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 20.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 80.0 30.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 15.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0

0.0 0.0

Sewerage Dwellings served by septic sewerage tanks netwo;k (%) (%)

Table 13. Ltbya’s housrng VW& by planning wea No. of standard dwelling utnts

Total dwelhng untts needed


Planning area


Tobrnq 6. Akhdar Benghazi

8.050 27,170 53,230

13.510 54.840 9o.ooo

33,400 101.400 146.WXl





Mrsratah Trtpoh Ez Zawiyh

37,150 88.690 30.210

67,490 i65,x30 58.16rJ

152,ooo 268,ooo 115.400




Tarhuna Gherian Nalut

9.060 15,710 5.250

15,170 30.670 5.840

23.800 48,ooo 10,800





Eldabiah Sirte

6,540 3.9X

19.160 28.830

45.ooo 84,GQa













El Jufra North Sabha South Sabha

2,800 12,770 10‘390

6.660 23,510 l&o00

13.ooo 63,200 48,000






625 .oiKl




Total Ghertan




Grand total




Source: Italconsult (1976, p. 200).

process in which the original residents in the traditional quarters of the cities remained in their social milieu. New residential areas should be so designed as to be sensitively connected to the rest of the urban (and rural) structure.

Allan. J.A., trb.va, rhe Experience of Orl. Croom Helm. London. 1981 Awotona. A.. Housrng design crneria for desert communtttes m Ltbya, a paper presented at the Sctentific Conference on “Development of desert communities”, orgamsed by the People’s Committee of Murzuk Munrcipaiity in co-operation with the Research Centre for Economtc SCWXXS and the Centre for African Studies; held tn Murzuk, Libya, from 26 to 29 October 1987, 31 pp. Doxtadrs Associates. Housmg m Libya: Vol. 2 - Problems, Poltctea. ~ro~rammes~ a report prepared for the Government of Ltbya. 1964a. Doxiadts Associates, Housmg m Libya” Vol. 1 -existing condittons. a reporr prepared for the Government of Libya, 1964b. Fergiani. M.B.. The Libyan Jamahinyn. Tripoli. 1976. Frnnmap Oy Consultantants, Sabha Regron: existing condttions settlements. October 1981 Gruchman, B., “Growth poies rn regmnal planning. Development, Geneva, 1972. Italconsult, Settlement pattern Libyan Arab Republic, Rome.




and condttion

analysis for

m the spatral structure of the Libyan economy”. m Growfh y&s end growth Kuklinski, A.R. (Editor), Umted Nations Research Institute for Social study: Nattonal Report. June 1976,

a document


for the Government

of the

Housing in Libya: X950-1980


Kamara, S.G. et al., “Socio-cultural influences on housing in Benghazi”, Third World Piannmg Rewew 9 (1). pp. 65-75, February 1987. Kennedy, D., “West Germany”, in Housing in Europe, Wynn, M. (Editor). Croom Helm, London and Canberra, 1984. Kezeiri, S.. “Re-structuring the urban system in Libya” in Social and Economic Development of Libya, Joffe. E.G.H. and McLachlan. K.S. (Editors). Middle East and North African Studies Press. Cambndge, 1982, pp. 355-359. Qathafi. M.Al., The Green Book - Part Two: The Economic Basis ofthe Third Universal Theory. The Pubhc Establishment for Publishing. Advertising and Distributton. Tripoli, 1974. Smith, F., Housing: the Social and Economc Elements. University of California Press, London. 1971. Stroller, H.. Constructron in Libya, a Report prepared for the Government

of Libya, Tripoli, 1962.

United Nations Development Programme, Housing Development in Libya: project findings and recommendations, a report prepared for the Government of the People’s Socialist Libyan Arab Republic, New York, 1977.

United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, UN Monograph for Seminar on housing statistics and programmes, New York, 1966. United Nations Economic Commission for Europe, Major trends in housmg policy m ECE countries, New York, 1980. United Nations Mission for Housing in Libya, Report of the Housing Design Adviser, Appendix 3, Tripoli, January-February 1969. Wynn, M. (Editor). Housing in Europe, Croom Helm, London and Canberra, 1984