Pillars supporting Amsterdam are slowly crumbling

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As you may know, Amsterdam was basically built in what can perhaps best be described as a swamp, and as it happens peat is not the best conceivable supporter for brick. Early Amsterdam residents got around this problem by driving huge wooden poles into the bog until it hit firmer ground and then building their houses on top of this wooden foundation.

It turns out, Parool says, that a changing climate is leading to longer droughts, which in turn lowers the water level and causes the poles to dry out and crumble.

It is mostly privately owned houses that are in danger of collapsing, as housing corporations have already replaced their pillars.

The Parool article quotes alderman Maarten van Poelgeest and a spokesperson of Waternet who both say that the situation is serious without going into much detail, although the latter says that “there is no need to panic, this won’t be an issue before 2040.”

(Photo by Wikipedia user Dohduhdah)

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