Wednesday 06 July 2022

Amsterdam calls a halt to fast delivery firms’ dark store expansion

Photo: DutchNews.nl

Amsterdam has decided to ban fast grocery delivery firms from setting up any more distribution points in residential areas after a surge in complaints from locals about noise and congestion.

Fast delivery firms pledge to get essential supplies to their customers within 10 minutes, and that means city centre delivery centres are key. Known as dark stores, the distribution points can often be identified by the blackout windows and the queues of delivery bikes and mopeds outside.

Amsterdam city council has now agreed to measure the impact of dark stores on the local population and to spend the next year deciding what conditions should be attached to their development.

‘This pause has been introduced before the increase in dark stores gets out of hand,’ city planning chief Marieke van Doorninck said.

Leiden is also looking into taking similar steps because of both noise and traffic problems.

The delivery companies in Amsterdam told broadcaster NOS they were surprised and disappointed by the city’s action.

‘We are looking into what steps we can take,’ a spokesman for Gorillas told the broadcaster.

The number of people using fast grocery delivery services such as Gorillas and Flink more than tripled in the second half of 2021, a survey by market researcher Kantar  found.

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