In the 1950s and 1960s, Amsterdam grew beyond its former border, the motorway ringroad. Extensive new residential areas were created in the west of the city, based on an urban plan from the 1930s, with large apartment blocks and low-rise row houses, floating in public green space. Only twenty years later, however, Amsterdam-West turned into a problematic district with a high percentage of immigrants and unemployment. Recent urban renewal interventions, including the transformation of many areas and the introduction of new dwelling types, promise to change this situation.
In contrast to the historic centre, Amsterdam-West offers space for architectural experiments. The results are partly spectacular projects with bold colours and concepts, but also some attempts to create innovative residential models for the specific target groups in this postwar neighbourhood.
We’ll take you on a tour along prime examples of post-war housing as well as recent urban renewal projects.
Start of the tour e.g. at a bike rental shop, bike ride to the West
Airey: prefab housingsysystem (J.F. Berghoef, 1951 / Hooyschuur, 2017)
Housing block “De Verfdoos” (Allert Warners, 1954 / Van Schagen, 2010)