Housing min. pledges to find solution for crumbling olim houses in South

Immigrants living in southern Israel complain that houses purchased from ministry are disintegrating after just ten years.

June 18, 2013 17:49
Bayit Yehudi MK Uri Ariel

MK Uri Ariel 370. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/ The Jerusalem Post)

Housing and Construction Minister Uri Ariel pledged this week to work to advance a solution to the distress of hundreds of olim (immigrants) and their families in the South, whose homes are crumbling and eaten by termites.

The commitment was expressed after the minister met with representatives of the residents, who had already filed an unfruitful legal complaint against the state several years ago in the amount of NIS 40 million.

The olim, most of whom came from countries of the former Soviet Union, live in Ofakim, Dimona, Beersheba, Arad and Netivot and had purchased lightweight construction houses offered to them by the Housing and Construction Ministry when they made aliya between the years 1991 and 1994.

Lightweight construction consists in a method of construction in which the building’s initial structure is made of aluminium or steel instead of concrete.

According to the complainants, although home buyers were promised  at the time that the life expectancy of such houses will be 50 years, in practice they began to disintegrate and be affected by termites, engineering defects and other abnormalities by 2005, after just 10 years.

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