Gwen van Eijk

Last Thursday, Rotterdam’s city council voted on its Housing Vision, which includes a plan to replace 20,000 affordable homes with 36,000 properties for middle- and upper-income households. The vote is the latest step in the city’s focus on ‘improving’ neighbourhoods, by combining gentrification with rules preventing some low-income households from moving into poorer neighbourhoods.

In response to the Housing Vision, a grassroots movement organized a petition last year, calling for a referendum, which was held on 30 November. While 72% voted against Rotterdam’s housing plan, only 17% of the electorate voted, well below the required 30%.

Together with urban geographer Brian Doucet (EUC) and urban sociologist Marguerite van den Berg (UvA), I wrote about the lessons that can be learned from Rotterdam’s anti-gentrification movement. Read the article that appeared in The Guardian last week here:

Rotterdam anti-gentrification housing referendum