Monday 24 February 2020


Should taxpayers pick up the tab for a private company’s mistake? The Telegraaf reports today that Amsterdam City Council is being put under considerable pressure by builders Hillen & Roosen to do just that.

Hillen & Roosen were responsible for building a shopping center complex – complete with a market square and flats – in the Amsterdam district of Bos and Lommer.
Opened with great furore about the regeneration of run-down district, the centre is now empty, the residents have been moved out and put into hotels. The reason? No reinforced concrete to hold up some of the floors.
Hillen & Roosen has worked out a generous compensation package for home owners, but the Telegraaf reports that there is a sneaky little clause attached to it: the whole compensation deal will be voided if Hillen & Roosen can’t agree with the council on how much it should pay to the city.
Amsterdam has forked out millions to rehouse the hapless tenants and help the shopkeepers – and wants it back. ‘We feel we are being put under pressure in an unfair manner,’ a spokesman for the council told the paper.
An ‘unfair manner’ is putting it mildly. It sounds rather like blackmail. Hillen & Roosen should be ashamed of themselves – and banned from any more council contracts until they pay up. has been free for 13 years, but now we are asking our readers to help. Your donation will enable us to keep providing you with fair and accurate news and features about all things Dutch.
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