Shortage of concrete pilings to support buildings may cripple construction industry

Work on building a new underground bike park in Amsterdam. Photo:

Construction companies are facing an acute shortage of concrete pilings used for the foundations of practically every building in the Netherlands. This will lead to delays in many building projects, warned broadcaster NOS on Thursday morning.

Some builders may have to wait six months or more to obtain pilings, Peter Vroom of Vroom Foundation Technology told the programme.

He said the building industry was now booming after the crisis years when many companies which made pilings were declared bankrupt. The remaining producers could not catch up with demand, Vroom said.

The pilings, up to 20 metres long, are used to support housing, offices and warehouses in the sandy subsoil which prevails throughout much of the country.

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