The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Optima LLC have signed a $10 million loan to develop affordable and sustainable residential housing developments in Georgia’s capital, Tbilisi.
The loan will finance two residential complexes, providing over 3,700 affordable and energy-efficient apartments for people on low- to middle-incomes. It is ADB’s first private sector housing project in the South Caucasus and Central Asia. Optima is a subsidiary of m2 Group and Georgia Real Estate (GRE), one of Georgia’s leading residential and commercial real estate companies.
“The project aims to modernize affordable housing in Tbilisi by incorporating inclusiveness into the design and adopting gender-responsive and accessibility standards,” said ADB Private Sector Operations Department Director of Infrastructure Finance for South Asia, Central Asia, and West Asia Shantanu Chakraborty. “These housing developments demonstrate how the industry can generate affordable and quality housing for low- to middle-income communities in Georgia and throughout the region.”
“The apartments will be affordable, energy-efficient, and well-built, offering decent accommodation for the elderly, people with disabilities, women, and children,” said ADB Country Director for Georgia Shane Rosenthal. “ADB’s loan is part of our ongoing commitment to the development of livable cities in Georgia.”
More than 80% of Tbilisi’s apartments were built during or before the Soviet era. Old residential blocks lack recreational areas, parking facilities, and elevators. Accessibility to public spaces for the elderly, people with disabilities, women, and children is also substandard.
In 2019, the city government unveiled an urban plan to promote sustainable urban development, spatial planning, and inclusive infrastructure. The government has created gender advisor roles within its urban development and environmental protection departments to promote gender-sensitive designs for the city’s open spaces.
“We are honored that this is the first affordable housing development deal in the region for the Asian Development Bank,” said m2 Group Chief Executive Officer Nikoloz Medzmariashvili. “The loan will provide medium-tenor financing for affordable housing projects in Tbilisi. It is important to note that the design has been enhanced to achieve greater results on energy efficiency and accessibility.”
GRE is a wholly owned subsidiary of JSC Georgia Capital, which is 100%-owned by Georgia Capital PLC. Georgia Capital PLC is an entity listed on the London Stock Exchange.
ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.