The IJsselhallen exhibition centre in Zwolle has been turned into temporary accommodation for 400 asylum seekers as an emergency measure.
One of the centre’s halls, covering 3,000 square metres, has been kitted out with bunk beds to cope with the surge of refugees from Syria, Eritrea and Somalia following an appeal for extra accommodation from junior justice minister Fred Teeven.
The city’s mayor Henk Jan Meijer says the measure is far from ideal but is the only option the city has. ‘It is an exhibition centre, not a nice living environment but it has been made ready within 72 hours,’ he told broadcaster Nos.
Refugees will not be confined to the centre and the mayor now plans to talk to locals and shopkeepers about ensuring there are no problems.