The Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Affairs (BMVBS) is the biggest investment ministry in Germany. It has the following responsibilities: Federal highways, rail- and waterways, air transportation on the one hand, town planning, urban development, building, housing and regional planning on the other hand.
The ministry is operating in Berlin and Bonn with a staff of 1700 employees. Since November 22, 2005 the Federal Minister is Mr. Wolfgang Tiefensee.
The ministry has eight directorates including directorate SW - town planning and housing. This directory is based on three pillars, the subdivisions town planning and building law (SW 1), housing law and promotion of housing (SW 2) and housing policy and housing market (SW 3).
In the section of town planning and urban development, the directorate is mainly in charge of the support programs social city, urban reconstruction east and urban reconstruction west.
In the housing section, especially the social security of housing for citizens whose income is insufficient to pay market oriented housing costs has a high priority. The main instruments in this sector are the income dependent housing allowances and the social housing subsidies the latter of which will however be transferred to the responsibility of the federal states. Moreover, important fields of activity are the energetic modernisation of the building stock, cost-saving construction and investment friendly framework conditions on the real estate markets.
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