The flip side of the booming economic growth in the Brainport region is the housing crisis it has caused. This fact was confirmed by Eindhoven’s Mayor, John Jorritsma. He was interviewed by Eindhoven News recently.
“In 2018, we had 5% economic growth in the Brainport region. That is over 1,4% more than, for instance, Amsterdam and Rotterdam.” As a result of the influx of people, houses have become extremely expensive in the region. “It is hard to get an affordable house here if you have an average income. Wealthier internationals have pushed up the housing prices.”
“It is a huge problem in Eindhoven to find an affordable house,” admits Jorritsma. “And we have a lack of housing. We have entered into a programme with the National Government and the Province of North Brabant. We are planning on building between 4,000 and 5,000 houses every year.”
“By 2026, we have to have built a total of 30,000 new homes. That is quite a challenge. We have limited space, so we have to go up. The first very high building will be constructed near the Eindhoven Station in January 2020. It will be 180m high. For the Netherlands, that is rather high.”
Hundreds of homes coming up
“We are also building temporary houses,” he added. “Right now, we are establishing more than 100 of these types of homes per week at several locations. These are for students, but we are also exploring the option of internationals using them for short-stay accommodation. Because from short-stay, we hope they will definitely stay.”
This is not without its challenges. “There are a lot of issues when it comes to building houses, especially concerning environmental laws nowadays. This not unique to Eindhoven.” The idea is to reduce carbon emissions in various ways. “It is a very complicated issue.” Since carbon is invisible to the naked eye, it is a difficult problem to measure, according to the Mayor.
“We want to be a sustainable country. Not only environmentally sustainable, but also for the people who live here. The Netherlands has always been at the forefront of this.”
This is part three of a five-part series. The follow-ups will be published in the coming days.
By: Melinda Walraven