Student - March 20, 2018

Municipal elections: build for students and starters (video)

Kenneth van Zijl,Stijn van Gils

The number of students attending Wageningen university has increased, and that is reflected in the availability of housing. Finding a room has become much more difficult, despite additional housing being realised. What to do now?

Rosanne Groot (GroenLinks) would like to see Wageningen build many additional houses. Upwards, as that is where most available space is. Lara Minnaard (Stadspartij) and Gersom van der Elst (ChristenUnie) are less enthusiastic about the idea. According to the two, higher buildings would not fit in the city view at all in most locations. These parties are also of the opinion that family houses should not readily be transformed into student housing.

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Divided opinions
Comparable divided opinions are found among the other parties. SP, PvdA and CDA agree that family houses should not simply become student housing. Most of these parties think it is unavoidable that increased numbers of students move to nearby towns. ‘It would be unfair to state that everyone can live in Wageningen. Even if we were to build extremely fast, it would still take time to build these houses’, Anne Walther explained during the student debate in Orion, earlier this month.

Lara Minnaard emphasises that under the current coalition, consisting of D66, GroenLinks and her own party Stadspartij, many building projects for student complexes have been started in the past few years. Procedures for the realisation of such projects should be handled as quickly as possible, she says, but it should still be done meticulously. And that simply takes time. The parties do agree on several points regarding housing, though. Each party would like the new buildings to be climate neutral, for example.

More about the municipal elections: