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Zaandam turning green

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No, the headline is not about environmental technology but about paint. We wrote earlier about the hotel in Zaandam that is made to look like it’s constructed of dozens of the green wooden houses that are typical for the area. It turns out that this was just part of a plan to give a much larger part of the inner city that look, including city hall.

Trendbeheer has more photos of the work in progress.

Alderman Hans Luiten told De Volkskrant in March: “There have been times where I wondered if I could deal with this much identity.” The new city centre is a response to the neglect of the old one. Luiten: “In the past you would not have wanted to be found dead there.”

The man behind the reshaping of the centre of Zaandam into a green Disneyland/nightmare/whatever is architect Sjoerd Soeters who was also responsible for Java Island in Amsterdam. “All his works have been discussed vehemently among architects, but are also appreciated much by their users”, Volkskrant adds. It appears that behind Soeters’ fa├žades lurks a strong vision of livable streets. Which may be why the main street on the aforementioned Java Island is a foot and bike path.

(Photo of the new city hall in Zaandam by Wikimedia user Arch who released it in the public domain)

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