Rural-urban migration and natural population increase are together placing enormous pressure for land in and around Honiara.
Based on 2009 Census estimates, the number of households located in and near Honiara will rise from 11,500 in 2009 to 50,857 by 2050 (an increase of more than 39,000 households).
Based on these estimates, the urban population of Guadalcanal Province will actually overtake that of Honiara by 2050, and Guadalcanal Province will become the most populous province of Solomon Islands.
While measures can be taken to encourage and guide higher population density and thereby accommodate additional households within the established urban area of Honiara, there is clearly an urgent need to address the population challenge by identifying and making available land for urban expansion in and around Honiara. Approximately 2,900 hectares will be required for urban expansion around Honiara to satisfy the expected demand due to population increase.
Extensive areas of land inside and immediately outside the Honiara city boundary have been identified as appropriate and ideal for urban expansion. Caveats, court proceedings and topographical constraints are some of the factors that prevent consideration of other areas.
Furthermore, squatter settlements have encroached into some Parcels, and a different approach will be necessary to address these areas.
Subject to approval by Cabinet and the Land Board, land can be purchased by agreement from landowners or alternatively partnerships can be agreed with landowners to subdivide, develop and release land for urban expansion.
This process can be driven and managed by government or alternatively large areas can be sold to developers to subdivide and develop subject to conditions. Either way, the ad-hoc approach to subdivisions whereby there has been no requirement to construct roads, footpaths, drainage or install utilities must cease, and replaced with a requirement to provide full master-planned subdivisions with fully serviced Parcels.