‘A metro line to Almere? Just build extra homes in North’
According to publicist Bas Kok, the construction of a metro line to Almere-Pampus is unnecessary. In Amsterdam there is sufficient space for housing: in Amsterdam North.
Last week, the tall omes from The Hague interfered with the dire housing shortage in Amsterdam. CDA and D66 unanimously conjured up a solution from the top hat: Almere. 25,000 to 30,000 homes can be built in the Pampus district. The condition is a metro of 2.5 billion euros. Earlier estimates of the costs have moreover doubled. There is no time to calculate it seriously, the decision has to be made this year.
“In ten minutes you are in the heart of Amsterdam!” D66 leader Rob Jetten reflects on this. Well, the metro runs in 25 minutes via IJburg and Zuidoost to the Zuidas. The heart of Amsterdam does not take ten, but forty minutes from platform to platform, with a transfer in Southeast.
Almere Pampus as a solution to the Amsterdam housing shortage is a bad plan. First, the metro tunnel is extremely expensive. Of course you have to invest to solve the housing shortage, but this plan offers very ‘little house’ for its 15 kilometer metro.
The second objection is that the capital needs additional housing and metro routes in Amsterdam. Almere is not a solution for house seekers who want to live in the capital. But the main reason for not taking this plan seriously is that Amsterdam has enough land on its own soil to build the said additional number of homes. For a large part even within the Ring A10, within cycling distance of the Dam. That sounds too good to be true, yet it is true.
North of the IJ, the city has an unprecedented amount of free space. Amsterdam North has about thirty percent of the territory of Amsterdam, but only about ten percent of the inhabitants. Where an average of ten thousand people per square kilometer live in the other Amsterdam city districts, there are about two thousand in North.
That has grown in recent years, but North is still five times more sparsely populated than the rest of Amsterdam. Offices and hotels, which make some districts very ‘crowdy’, have also been sown above the IJ.
If you take a closer look at the northern district, you will find space for some 25,000 to 30,000 additional homes on top of the future construction sites for the Port-City and Hamerkwartier.
The first 15,000 to 20,000 can come between the Ring and the current buildings. The empty space is between fifty and more than a hundred meters. You will soon have one hundred and fifty football pitches over a length of ten kilometers.
The buildings on the Ringweg do not have to become a Berlin wall. Green skegs and meadow boulevards can enter the city from Waterland. If you partially tunnel or over-lock the Ring, such as the A9 in Zuidoost, you have even more space. The now messy back of the city will become a front through these homes.
The second additional construction site is located directly above the Ring A10 at the level of the dismantled sewage treatment plant. This part of North is dominated by the noisy Slochterweg. Two kilometers away is Het Schouw, to say the least not the most beautiful place in Waterland.
This is divided between Amsterdam and the municipality of Waterland, the other side is Landsmeer. Some tufts of houses, a gas station and business parks. Furthermore, it is mainly a junction of roads to all parts of North Holland, plus a public transport hub. A what?
Yes, with more than ten fast bus lines to the capital, Almere-Pampus would still be jealous of Het Schouw even by metro. In that unsightly place a fast bus leaves every few minutes to Amsterdam Center. It is five kilometers to old Amsterdam by bicycle.
Cars can be reached on the A10 within two minutes. The view from Het Schouw over the Ilperveld and the historic villages of Waterland is breathtaking. This is the dream town we simply forgot to build. Probably because there was always more than enough building land. Or perhaps because building in Waterland has been taboo in recent decades. As for the villages and the meadows around them, I get that.
However, housing in Het Schouw, on and across the Slochterweg, makes this rural North area more beautiful and quiet. Then choose exclusively apartments. Use little soil, rather go up a little. You can get there on a small stretch about 12,000 lost homes. A cozy, car-free and sustainable town as the northern entrance beacon of the capital.
Continue through the North / South line one stop (and later to Purmerend). Obviously, this should not be an advance on the development of Landelijk Noord. By including the surrounding meadows in the zoning plan of this town, you safeguard the greenery. From Het Schouw you will be at Amsterdam Central Station in six minutes by metro. In the heart of Amsterdam – without a transfer
Between 2020 and 2030, a total of 845,000 homes must be built to meet growing demand. That writes Minister Kajsa Ollongren of the Interior on Monday in the State of the Housing Market 2020.
The report contains the most important developments in the housing market of the past year. One of the main goals of the State of the Housing Market 2020 is to keep housing production going. This is the only way to meet the growing demand and at the same time eliminate the housing shortage.
There is currently a shortage of 331,000 homes. That is 4.2 percent of the total housing stock in the Netherlands. According to the report, this should be reduced to 2 percent by 2035.
According to Minister Ollongren, the demand for housing will only increase in the coming period, partly due to the growing number of inhabitants that the Netherlands has. The Netherlands is expected to have 18.8 million inhabitants in fifteen years. The report also shows that mainly starters, people with a middle income and vulnerable people currently have trouble finding something suitable.
Due to, among other things, the nitrogen problem, exposure to PFAS (chemicals) and because there are too few construction sites, the production of new-build homes will drop sharply, from 71,500 in 2019 to an expected 55,000 in 2020. In 2021, production is expected to decrease even further. to 50,000. After that, the situation should slowly recover.
Corona crisis makes people more reticent
The report also examines the consequences of the corona crisis for the housing market. The crisis fears that people will be more reluctant to buy a home. Investors and developers may invest less quickly in new-build homes, Ollongren thinks.
It now looks like housing demand has indeed declined since the outbreak of the coronavirus. According to the minister, the previous crisis in 2008 also shows that the consequences for construction during a crisis can last for a long time.
Demand for land to build is increasing
The demand for locations to build new buildings is increasing, while the supply is extremely limited.
Given the expansion of the North / South line towards Purmerend, for example, it seems that building in Amsterdam North is one of the few remaining options.