Housing for people, not for profit.
De Bundel wants to provide housing for Amsterdammers living in precarious conditions, by not only offering them an affordable and stable home, but to also make them part of a community. A community which is strongly rooted in the area in which it surrounds itself.
Housing cooperative de Bundel arose out of its concern about the housing crisis in Amsterdam. Amsterdammers are being pushed out of the city, young people can not find a home (or merely housing that is too expensive, with a temporary contract) and families that have been living in the city for generations see themselves being relocated to make room for new housing projects, fit for a new high-earning demographic. De Bundel wants to provide a solution for Amsterdammers living in precarious conditions, by not only offering them an affordable and stable home, but to also make them part of a community. A community which is strongly rooted in the area in which it surrounds itself. De Bundel has won a tender for a plot near the August Allebéplein, in Amsterdam Nieuw-West and will start the development phase in April 2023. In 2022, the municipality of Amsterdam released this tender in which housing cooperatives were asked to apply to develop a housing complex consisting of 136 units.
From its initiation, de Bundel has made efforts to become rooted in the neighbourhood, by talking to different stakeholders and to shape the plans for the project together with neighbours. It is essential for de Bundel to largely consist of the group that it wants to develop homes for, namely; Amsterdammers who have lived a (majority) of their lives in Nieuw-West and find themselves in precarious housing conditions.
The neighbourhood in which it is located, Amsterdam Slotervaart, is a lively, but also a rapidly gentrifying neighbourhood. Slotervaart used to be described as a no-go area, however, it has been attracting a lot of new developments in the last few years. This renewed interest in Slotervaart also has an effect on existing communities, as many social housing blocks are planned to be demolished to make room for more mid- and freesector rental units as well as expensive homes for sale. In these demolition/newly-built projects often only a small percentage of the original residents will be able to return to a new home in Amsterdam Slotervaart. It is within these circumstances that de Bundel operates.
De Bundel recognizes that as a housing cooperative, it has a responsibility to not only create a community for Amsterdammers living in precarious housing circumstances. But, it also has a responsibility and a platform to push for systemic change. De Bundel does this by joining forces with different neighbourhood groups, activists and residents to struggle against these forms of urban injustice and gentrification. De Bundel has done this by co-organizing a protest led by residents of neighbouring streets (de Piet Mondriaanstraat and Johan Greivestraat) against the proposed plans to demolish the social housing blocks in these streets. Also, through forming a new collective named Nieuw-West in Verzet with which another protest against gentrification in Nieuw-West was organised and through their manifesto a vision was proposed for a more just housing policy.
As the housing crisis is impacting people from all generations, the homes in de Bundel should be for all different phases of life as well, for young people, families as well as elderly, with all their own matching facilities. Ideally there is a wide mix of different apartment sizes as well as a couple of co-housing units, shared facilities such as a larger kitchen per apartment group. As it will be a large and mixed complex, there is also room needed to get together and organise social and cultural activities, some of these could be publicly accessible for neighbours. These spaces could be used as a community centre, for people in the neighbourhood.
De Bundel will house singles, starters, elderly and families. Since de Bundel is building a project that originates from the neighbourhood, the housing requirements are also tailor made to fit needs of the neighbourhood. De Bundel will be a mixed complex where residents who are rooted or grew up in Nieuw-West live together with newcomers. One of the problems in the neighborhood is that young people need to stay with their parents for too long because they cannot find their own accommodation. Youth housing as it is currently arranged does not offer a solution because of the long waiting lists, the limited possible rental period and the maximum age limit for eligibility.
The residents of De Bundel reflect the diversity of Nieuw-West. We use different categories within the mid-rental limits. In this way we can house a greater diversity of tenants within De Bundel. There are roughly three residential categories within De Bundel (price level 2023): low mid-rent (€ 809), mid-rent (approx. € 1,029) and high middle rent (approx. € 1,175). The higher middle rent can possibly also be occupied by two home sharers, which means that there will also be affordable housing for households that differ from the standard family.
Central to this system of different categories is solidarity. That starts with the rental prices. Some pay a higher rent so that others can pay a lower rent. We also operate a solidarity system in which members in the higher mid-range rent pay an extra allowance of an average of €50 per month, which means that tenants in the lower mid-range rent category can receive an average of €160 in allowance.
The main entrance of the building is adjacent to the Spoorpark. A ramp leads from the reception hall to the semi-sunken basement with a parking garage for 30 cars and 36 scooters and a large bicycle shed for approximately 440 bicycles in a double parking system. Connected to the entrance there is a large common room of 250m2 on the corner. The program of this will be determined during the participation process in the next phases, part of it will certainly be a large multifunctional space for general meetings and events organised by Bundelaars or in collaboration with neighbourhood partners. Two elevators and a spacious staircase lead you to the top six floors. On each floor there is a smaller shared room of approx. 40m2, the use of which is determined by the households of the floor itself. The program of these rooms can vary from shared living/playroom, large dining room with professional kitchen, laundry room, music room, studio, office or workspace, etc.
On the ground floor there are 10 split-level units with direct access from the Spoorpark and the garden. Almost all other apartments on the other floors have an entrance through extra wide galleries with a view of the garden. In the west wing, on floors 2, 3 and 4, there are bayonet maisonettes, which are accessed from a central corridor.
De Bundel consists of a wide variety of apartments to increase the diversity of the residents, but they all have similar features to ensure a good quality of living: there are no studios, all units have at least one separate bedroom, but usually two or three. All units are cross ventilated and all have their own balcony of 5m2. The layout of the houses is being developed together with the future residents and the plans contain a certain degree of flexibility to meet individual housing needs. This way, Bundelaars enjoy enough privacy and their own space in their apartment and thanks to the shared spaces, there is also a more collective/public atmosphere, the circulation areas of the building are designed to facilitate spontaneous encounters.
De Bundel wants to use 650 m2 of non-residential space, divided over at least three areas with different scale sizes and programs. Located on the ground floor, these spaces are open on the Marius Bauerstraat side, with large windows that open fully to welcome the city. At the moment we are also thinking of two alternatives, one with more independent non-residential units next to each other (three or more) and one with a more fluid design where the different functions are combined in the same large space (reference: Ru-Paré).
What de Bundel will look like will unfold in the near future. From its initiation Time to Access has been advising and supporting de Bundel. Through helping with process management and facilitating different workshops, which help to concretize the plans of de Bundel. With this collaboration where are taking the next step in facilitating cooperatives, with not just being responsible for the design but to also advise on project and process management of the Bundel.
Amsterdam, 2022 - ongoing
Self-built, Co-housing, 11.900m2 BVO
136 mid-rent units with an average size of 70m2, communal spaces, non-housing functions
Energy neutral, construction method t.b.d.
Co-developed and co-designed with Housing cooperative De Bundel
Financial adviser - Kantelingen