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Omroep Flevoland – News – “Worthless”: Almere Haven residents complain about neglect of public spaces

Omroep Flevoland – News – “Worthless”: Almere Haven residents complain about neglect of public spaces

The municipality of Almere suffers from a significant backlog in the management and maintenance of public spaces. In the De Marken district of Haven, the municipality is clearly cutting back on green maintenance, much to the annoyance of residents.

“It’s really worthless,” Ineke van Gaveren says with a sigh as she walks with her little puppy. “The grass was mowed too late. It’s so high that I can’t even walk my puppy, because he can’t cross.”

In De Marken it is clear that no green maintenance has been carried out for some time. Sidewalks have become impassable due to sprawl, parking lots are overgrown with weeds and green barriers appear between roads and sidewalks.

Very moist
The municipality of Almere indicated a few weeks ago that mowing the grass could not be done everywhere due to heavy rainfall. In other locations the grass is intentionally high due to biodiversity. “You can do it somewhere else, right? It doesn’t have to be here in the middle of a residential area,” Van Gavren says.

The municipality of Almere is reducing municipal functions to maintain its financial health. The municipality’s website states that some works will be postponed for a year or two. Extensive maintenance work in the music area, De Hoven and De Marken has also been postponed.

The neighborhood flower beds don’t appeal to Ronald Ilott, even though they were planted last year. “It all looked neat, and when you see it now, the weeds are high between them.” He points out that he was really impressed by the fact that the municipality was active in the neighborhood last year. “I thought things were going well and everything would be fine. But it turned out not to be the case.”

Fading glory
Many residents who have lived in the neighborhood for thirty to forty years point out that De Marquin is not what it used to be. “Look at that,” said a man who was about to drive off. He revs his engine as he gets out and points to the alley next to his house. Weeds are high. In some places, the sidewalk is no longer visible.

According to this elderly man, maintaining the green environment is not only the municipality’s mission, but also the neighborhood’s mission itself. “But you’re only a week early, because I’m doing curbside work again next week.” This also immediately shows that he is less happy with the maintenance done by his neighbors. Weeds are also higher there. He also did not want to mention his name for fear of negative reactions from local residents.

Han Schrage says the municipality of Almere does not encourage residents to roll up their sleeves. He mentions, for example, the large amount of garbage in the neighborhood. “There are places in our area that are used as a garbage dump.” According to him, there is no point in contacting the municipality about this issue. “They expect a garbage truck to come and pick up the trash that same week, but they leave it for two or three weeks and then they can clean up the whole neighborhood.

A few weeks ago, a new coalition agreement was presented in Almere. Although the municipality of Almere indicated that additional cuts should be made in the municipality when a new coalition agreement is presented, a spokesman indicated that this would not be repeated again in public administration and maintenance.

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