Urbi Enters the Mexico City Market With Low-Rise Vertical Housing

Jan. 22, 2009

MEXICO CITY , Jan. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Urbi announces the beginning of a pilot program for Low-Rise Vertical Housing aimed at workers that qualify for the Infonavit Total mortgage (6-15 General Minimum Wages -GMW-), under its VidaResidencial(R) concept; which takes advantage of unused or underused spaces in Mexico City . This will renew the urban infrastructure of the city and rescue the spaces through redensification.

Urbi's incursion in the vertical housing market responds to an unattended demand for affordable housing in Mexico City , and to the need of redensification of urban spaces with housing developments that prioritize the verticality and sustainability through an optimal use of the infrastructure, considered as the biggest challenges to the 2007-12 National Housing Program, "Towards Sustainable Housing Development," run by the National Housing Commission.

To this regard, Jose Antonio Revah , CEO of Mexico City's Housing Institute, mentioned: " Mexico City is the federal entity with the highest number of Infonavit active members (2,748,000), but at the same time boasts one of the lowest penetration percentages, below 11% (314,000); which compared with Tamaulipas (23%) tells us that there is an enormous demand that hasn't been met. Initiatives like Urbi's offer sustainable growth by taking advantage of unused or underused spaces to create new affordable housing neighborhoods; but it also creates a social infrastructure that allows families to improve their living conditions through participation, teamwork and community's coexistence."

For his part, Humberto Chavez , Urbi's Business Development Director for Metropolitan Areas, noted: "We identified an opportunity to offer housing to an unattended segment; workers earning between 6 and 15 GMW with the ability to get a mortgage like Infonavit Total; a co-financing scheme with banks for homes of up to MX$583,000, under the same terms and conditions of the Traditional Infonavit mortgage. Thus, we adapted UrbiNova´s architectural,urban design and construction technology principles, which allow us to maintain practically the same construction cycles as with single-family housing."

And he added: "With this pilot program we are creating a new housing model for Mexico City with the following characteristics: first, it's located in popular areas; second, it consists of low-rise buildings for housing, parking and amenities; and third, it takes advantage of our experience with the VidaResidencial concept, which promotes the development of an organizational structure among residents."

Urbi's low-rise vertical housing communities are mainly focused to affordable entry-level and low middle-income housing; which consider a joint effort with authorities to design and implement specific security zoning programs with surveillance modules, closed-circuit video surveillance and emergency buttons at different points in the "new neighborhood."

UrbiNova is a proprietary construction system that allows the use of adjustable steel-molds to develop low-rise vertical housing with prices between MX$196 and MX$583 thousand pesos. Along with UrbiNet, this tool allows the company to maintain a perfect synchronization between the company's housing and client production lines, that quickly adapts to the changing needs of each local market; at the same time, it allows the company to maintain the same profitability levels, regardless of the characteristics, location or the value of the home. In addition, the homes with values of up to MX$246,000 built with UrbiNova qualify for the federal government program of subsidies to economic housing; which allows to serve the housing needs of the lower income segments with affordable, sustainable and quality housing.

To conclude, Jose Carlos Cota , Urbi's Director of impulse to the Operation and Financing, noted: "By launching these new communities, Urbi is not only answering the call of federal and local authorities to develop housing that contributes to the reorganization of the cities, but we also move forward with our 2007-2011 strategic plan; deploying our low-rise vertical housing business line."

And he concluded, "This allows us to move forward in our defensive growth strategy focused on attending the affordable entry-level and low-middle income housing segments, which will represent around 94% of the housing revenues in 2009; all backed by over 27 years of experience developing communities. Each new neighborhood represents a Strategic Business Unit (SBU), with standardized and replicable business processes, that thanks to UrbiNet allows for large scale and profitable growth while simultaneously maintaining the same levels of growth, profitability and cash flow determined by the company."

Urbi Desarrollos Urbanos S.A.B. de C.V. (MSE: URBI*) is one of the leaders in the housing sector in Mexico and the biggest developer in the northern states, an area with one of the highest growth rates. Additionally, it has a growing presence in the country's metropolitan areas. In 27 years of operations, Urbi has developed over 260,000 homes, and has always conducted its business with a strong emphasis on financial performance, making it one of the most profitable companies in the sector. Urbi has a unique and replicable business model supported by UrbiNet, its state-of-the-art IT platform.

Contact: Antonio Jorge Investor Relations Managers URBI Desarrollos Urbanos, SA de CV, +011-52-55-11020390 x10724 antonio.jorge@urbi.com

SOURCE Urbi Desarrollos Urbanos S.A.B. de C.V.

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