Amsterdam expands area where no new hotels are allowed

“Amsterdam already has enough hotels in most of the city, new hotels do not add anything here for the people of Amsterdam”, according to alderman Victor Everhardt (Economic Affairs, D66). There are now a total of 533 hotels in Amsterdam, good for about 40,000 rooms.

Larger ‘no’ area

New hotels are only allowed in a few districts in the capital, where they have ‘added value’ for the neighbourhood. In 2017, the municipality already declared new hotels undesirable in a large part of the city, as of today an even larger part has been declared a so-called ‘no’ area.

For example, new hotels are no longer allowed to be built in the area on either side of the southern and western part of the A10 ring road. On the map below you can see in which parts of Amsterdam new hotels are still allowed.

The municipality has come up with something else in its efforts to curb mass tourism. Because of a gap in the regulations, it was still possible to build in parts of the city that the municipality had labeled a ‘no’ area.

Hole in the rules

If the zoning plan for a certain location stated that a hotel could be built, this was possible. Even if the location was in an area where the municipality no longer allowed new hotels. In this way, construction plans for new hotels with a total of 2,400 rooms have still been made since the rules were tightened.

This ‘lacuna’ has been repaired as of today, the municipality reports. The municipality does this through ground lease contracts. This sets out the agreements between the owner of the land (the municipality) and the user of the land.

Via leasehold contract

Suppose an entrepreneur has bought a property in the city and wants to turn it into a hotel, then he or she must first go to the ground lease counter to have the agreements for the use of the land adjusted.

Entrepreneurs who wanted to have this contract amended in order to be able to build a hotel were usually able to do so if the zoning plan also included room for building a hotel.

Legally in order according to state lawyer

As of today, the municipality is putting a line through this, by using its power as a land owner. According to the municipality, this horse remedy is justified to protect the liveability of the city. The municipality has had it investigated whether this is legally acceptable and according to state lawyer Pels Rijcken it is.

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