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CDA tackles student-housing misery

November 17, 2011

By Marlene Werner

AMSTERDAM –Piet Hein Donner, CDA Minister of Inner Affairs, presented means to tackle the shortage of student apartments creating 16.000 additional rooms by next year, Dutch media reported.

Donner’s measures make part of the national agenda plan for student housing estates (landelijke actieplan studentenhuisvestiging) he and others signed Nov. 17.

“The current problem mainly concerns the rising numbers of students. This might be a result of longer study duration due to the crisis,” Donner said to NOS Journaal.

Funded building mainly concerns student rooms in dormitories.

The ambitious plans are realized by reducing the obligatory size of student rooms from 18m2 to 15m2, thereby allocating fixed financing of €1 billion to more resulting space.

Further financial support is still required.

Additional supporting measures include a reduction in required parking space and decreased land prices, offers realized by the affected municipalities.

Loud complaints on the immense shortage are heard repeatedly every year, right after the start of a new academic period.

Amsterdam, Utrecht and Leiden show most problematic circumstances, with students waiting for a room for more than a year.

Dutch media published several accounts earlier this year lamenting the terrible, and consecutively worsening, situation.

“A student who is starting a master education in Utrecht will graduate before he finds an apartment,” said Pascal ten Have, chairman of LSVb (Landelijke Studenten Vakbond), a Dutch student association.

Amsterdam’s shortage in student facilities is estimated around 14.000 rooms amiss, ASVA, a Dutch student association, said in September.

National numbers lie within an estimate of 30.000.

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