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The third session of the PrepCom met at UN Headquarters in New York from 5-16 February 1996. Organizational questions included participation of NGOs and the implementation of Rule 61 to facilitate input from local authorities, and financial resources. Negotiations began on the draft Statement of Principles and Commitments and the GPA. Key debates included the “right to housing” and the role of the the UN Centre for Human Settlements (UNCHS) in Habitat II follow-up. Due to time constraints during the final Plenary, the PrepCom had no choice but to forward a heavily bracketed text to Istanbul.

Working Group I discussed funding for Habitat II, the Best Practices Initiative, and parallel fora in Istanbul. Australia proposed that participants at Habitat II commit to action by 2000.

Working Group II formed three subgroups to consider the draft Habitat Agenda. Subgroup A considered the Preamble, Goals and Principles, Commitments, International Cooperation and Implementation. It allocated problematic texts, including those on financial resources and the right to housing, to informal groups. Subgroups B and C considered the GPA Introduction, Adequate Shelter and Sustainable Human Settlements. Due to time constraints, the text on Capacity Building was not addressed.