Betondorp ('concrete vilage') is a garden suburb in the east of Amsterdam.
|Garden City Type:||Mixed (housing association / municipality / other)|
|Address:||Brink, and surrounding streets|
|Years of construction:||
1923 Start construction
|Initiator/client:||Municipality of Amsterdam|
|Architect or related:||
Jan Gratama and Gerrit Versteeg
Jan Gratama (1877-1947) was a Dutch architect, town planner, artist and editor who grew up in Groningen. Gratama built in the Amsterdam School style, an expressive building style that was initiated by Michel de Klerk, Piet Kramer and Joan van der Meij. Gratama was the first to coin the term 'Amsterdam School' in the
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Jan Gratama and Gerrit Versteeg
Jan Gratama (1877-1947) was a Dutch architect, town planner, artist and editor who grew up in Groningen. Gratama built in the Amsterdam School style, an expressive building style that was initiated by Michel de Klerk, Piet Kramer and Joan van der Meij. Gratama was the first to coin the term 'Amsterdam School' in the article Dr. H.P. Berlage and His Work, a publication from 1916 celebrating Berlage's sixtieth birthday.
Gratama was educated as an architect at Delft Technical University (then still Polytechnical University Delft) and was chair of the Dutch architectural society Architectura et Amicitia. During the Nazi-German occupation of the Netherlands between 1940 and 1945, Gratama was alderman for Public Works and Public Housing. Because of his sympathies for National Socialism, Gratama was prosecuted and lived in isolation after the Second World War until his death in 1947.
Gratama worked together with architect and town planner Gerrit Versteeg (1872-1938) between 1914 and 1930. Versteeg was trained at Delft Technical University as a carpenter. After completing his education he started to work as an architect.
Between 1901 and 1914 Versteeg was vice-president of Public Works in Arnhem. Thereafter, he worked with Gratama on various public housing projects, including Betondorp. Versteeg also designed a type of transformer house for the Provincial Electricity Company of Gelderland ('Provinciale Geldersche Electriciteits-Maatschappij').
|Explanation:||In 2022 the city of Amsterdam approved the start of the procedure to designate three areas as municipal protected areas, among the Betondorp. The three areas will be protected because of their high urban development, architectural and cultural-historical value.|
|General condition of Garden City:||Good condition|
Architecture / Urban planning
Betondorp ('Concrete Village') or officially 'Tuindorp Watergraafsmeer' was a garden suburb built in Watergraafsmeer in the East of Amsterdam between 1923 and 1925. Betondorp is one of the first experiments of public housing in concrete.
Because of the First World War, the commonly used building material, bricks, had become more expensive. Moreover, there was a shortage of skilled laborers. Concrete was therefore chosen as a substitute building material.
The town planning of Betondorp was executed by Jan Gratama and Gerrit Versteeg. Nine architects were selected to built the 900 houses, that all used different types of concrete and different construction techniques. They were J.B. van Lochem, D. Greiner, W. Greve, D. Roosenburg, H.F. Mertens, J.H. Mulder, H.W. Valk, J. Hulschbosch, and J. Gratama himself.
Betondorp was buit with a variety of shops, several schools, a bathhouse, a public library and a community building ('verenigingsgebouw'), mostely concentrated around Brink. Cafes and churches were deliberately not a part of the plan initially.
The houses in Betondorp are still owned by housing associations, namely Eigen Haard, Stadgenoot and Ymere.