Abu Dhabi City Municipality has launched an extensive inspection and awareness campaign to crack down on overcrowded housing units in areas of Shakhbout City.
The drive also educates people about the negative effects of overcrowded houses, including health and safety risks and straining public utilities.
The campaign, which will run until January 28, aims to find solutions to the phenomenon of overcrowded houses and to reduce the negative effects resulting from random housing that don’t conform to health and safety standards.
Inspections are also being carried out on the exterior of buildings to ensure they comply with the city’s standards for aesthetic appearance.
The officials urge tenants, owners of properties, investors and property managers, who are still making many people to stay in a small a room or an apartment, to correct their act before legal action is taking on them, they said.
According to the municipality, besides distorting the city’s appearance, overcrowded homes cause damage to parks and green spaces, and put pressure on electricity loads and waste transport companies.
Fines are regularly issued by Abu Dhabi Municipality officials to residents and landlords of commercial buildings that illegally housing tenants during such campaigns.
The municipality has, over the years, also fined firms for making their employees live in overcrowded and substandard accommodations.
The UAE’s residential laws set a limit of three people per room and prohibit makeshift partitions subdividing rooms.
Offenders of Abu Dhabi’s residential laws face fines of between Dh10,000 and Dh100,000. Repeat offenders are fined no less than Dh100,000 and no more than Dh200,000.
For big offences, or in case of repeated violations, the offenders are prosecuted.