The evacuation of more than two million persons from the mainland to an already densely populated island in 1949 made the provision of low-cost housing an early priority. By 1979, more than 150,000 units of public housing had been built. Since the 1970s, government housing programs have focused on the cities, with slum clearance and the construction of high-rise apartment dwellings for low-income groups the major priorities. Two new towns were constructed in the early 1980s and a third was planned. The government set a target of 600,000 new housing units for the 1979–89 decade, but only 236,106 units were completed as of 1986. In 2000, the total housing stock was at about 6,993,099 units with about 3.4 people per dwelling. About 83% of all dwellings were owner occupied.