The Hotstepper's Blog

Eyes of Riff Roff

Posts Tagged ‘Feijenoord

Vreewijk – Lede 40

leave a comment »

As of June 23, 2010 Lede 40 is a museum house. The last occupant was born on the premises and has never modernized it. At Lede 40, the history of the district Vreewijk is tangible. Owner Com • Wonen has asked the Historical Museum of Rotterdam to manage this unique home. With this house, the museum does not only want to present a tranquil era, but in cooperation with local residents it is searching for the story of all times about Vreewijk.

Vreewijk, also called Tuindorp, is a part of the district Feijenoord in the South of Rotterdam. In 1913 the first NV Rotterdam Tuindorp was founded by K.P. van der Mandele, J. Mees and L.J.C.J. van Ravesteyn. The purpose of this NV (Eng = PLC) was “to establish and operate one or more garden villages, particularly for less wealthy people.” The plan of the neighborhood is based on the original pattern of ditches in the former polder. Vreewijk is designed as a village and is characterized by much ‘green’.(trees and gardens)

The street pattern was developed by Berlage (western part) and Granpré Moliere (eastern). The houses were designed by Granpré Molière,  and J.H. de Roos and W.F. Overeijnder, who both  also designed the Sparta soccer stadium Het Kasteel.

In March 2007 Vreewijk was put on a list of 40 problem areas by Minister Ella Vogelaar. Com • Wonen, one of the biggest housing corporations in the district, has plans to demolish 85 houses in the area Bree / Maarland and replace them with homes for the elderly. Existing houses are outdated and would suffer from moist, mold and cracks in the walls. Therefor renovation would be too expensive and according to the housing corporation is no option. An action committee was established and protest against the demolition has been raised. Com • Wonen was accused of wrongly having moved people in order to have the houses empty. Anyway, the housing company partnered with the Historical Museum of Rotterdam that carries out projects in neighborhoods with residents, focusing on the living cultural heritage of the city. Com · Wonen supports this initiative because it respects the cultural heritage of Vreewijk.

“Today most of us are yet provided with shelter: but ‘living’ is a privilege of only a few of us.”

Could Granpré Moliere have foreseen how relevant this statement of his  would turn out to be in the future related to the district he helped build? In order to make up your mind on these issues, it can certainly do no harm to visit the museum house and talk with local residents. But also if you just want a glimpse into the past Lede 40 is worth a visit.

Opening hours: Tuesday and Thursday from 9.30 to 12.30 hours Wednesday from 9.30 to 16.30 hours.


Les Banlieus

leave a comment »

Last week I watched the film Les Banlieus on I can’t say that it’s the best movie I’ve ever seen, but in a way it is fun to watch. The “what if” aspect of the film intrigues me and although the scenario is not likely to happen, it gives a nice view on contemporary political and social issues in both Rotterdam and many (European) cities.

The film is made with young people from the Feijenoord district who have little or no experience in audiovisual arts. Through short workshops the youngsters  were well taught how to work a camera. After two audition rounds people were selected for various roles. The film was directed by Hacene Sarhan, maker of Torrie and the Atalanta Project. This film was made possible with financial support from the district Feijenoord  and Your World ’09 and was achieved by Afri Foundation ( and Neon Media.

In the deprived areas of a city, the young people are fed up. They don’t want to be treated  as second class citizens anymore. Don is one of those young people. He decides to take action with other youngsters from his neighborhood and thus draw attention to the situation in his hood  in a peaceful way. When two little boys die under suspicious circumstances, everything changes. The peacefulness disappears and the youth start a riot.

Written by thehotstepper

March 22, 2010 at 10:50 am

Ik en mijn familie – Persoonsdam

with one comment

After the succes of the Monsters out door exhibition, another outdoor exhibition has seen the light at the Persoonsdam in Rotterdam Feijenoord: Ik en mijn familie. The Monsters exhibition was part of the project Droom en Daad by Villa Zebra. The project was commissioned by Woonstad Rotterdam. The goal of the project is that children reflect on the exterior in the area around the Persoonsdam. Children from the neighbourhood have devised plans (dreams) that can be implemented (deed) in short term. (see also

Between the pictures is also room for messages of public interest.

I guess this new exhibition is also part of the project Droom en Daad. I cannot find information about it on the internet and in local newspapers… I wouldn’t be the first time that The Hotstepper beats the regular news, but this blog is not about me, but about the beautiful paintings that give the area around the Persoondam a colourful impulse again.

Written by thehotstepper

February 21, 2010 at 12:35 pm

Day of Dialogue (Dag van de dialoog)

leave a comment »

Every now and then I get a mailing I feel is interesting and important to share. Today I received this mailing. Provided that enough people of diverse backgrounds will attend, I am sure that the meetings that are organised by Trattoria Borgo d’Aneto on the occasion of Dag van de dialoog ( will be very interesting and worthwhile. Certainly  the event will be successful, so I highly recommend it.

Dag van de dialoog 1

On November 6 and 7 (Friday and Saturday) Day of Dialogue will be organised in several Dutch cities including Rotterdam. The goal is to give people the opportunity to exchange views with each other. Rotterdam is a city that is inhabited by many nationalities. The meetings in Trattoria Borgo d’Aneto focus on bringing as many nationalities together. On Friday the purpose is to bring people from the city center together with people from the Feijenoord district. On Saturday, the main goal is to bring people together who populate the Feijenoord neighborhood in order to meet each other and get to know each other better.

The meetings are free of admittance, but limited to approximately 40 people. You can register at or by calling 010 290 77 32.

Dag van de dialoog 2

Written by thehotstepper

October 19, 2009 at 8:59 am

Huisman Advertisement – Feijenoordkade

leave a comment »

Huisman advertisement - Feijenoordkade (detail)

The mural at the corner of the Feijenoordkade and the Dillenburgstraat looks very authentic, but is only two months old. It was commissioned by Woonstad Rotterdam and painted by Leo Mineur in July 2009.Huisman advertisement - Feijenoordkade (reconstruction)

Years ago the text in the ‘picture frame’ was erased by painting it white, so it was hard to discover what was underneath. Still, they succeeded in discovering what must have been the text of the last advertisement. That is… they came up with 2/3 of the text.

Inquiries with people who lived in the area did not come up with a solution. And the few photos that exist of the Nijverheidstraat and the Feijenoordkade did not show the advertisement in it. Nevertheless, the project manager was all excited about restoring  the text they had discovered so far. He stated that it reads like a cool poem. In fact he’s right about that, although the poem doesn’t really make sense, the text is typical for the type of industries that were located in this area in the 40s and 50s, so it gives us an excellent view into the history of the Feijenoord district.  Translated it would be:

             Ship Repairs   Steel Masts   Derricks   On Shore Lifting Devices

Huisman advertisement - Gemeentearchief

Then one of the residents made a discovery in the City’s Archives. She found a picture showing the entire advertising frame and thus found the last pieces of the puzzle.

With a perfect example of the last known text available, it was decided that the restoration would be as authentic as possible, including the typographic and spelling errors, for they too are typical for the no nonsense working class area which the Feijenoord area was. For instance it is clearly visible that the spacing between words and letters is not the same and the longest line (STALEN MASTEN) is crushed to fit. The advertisement mentions the shop address on Nijverheidsstraat 28, but the street around the corner is Nijverheidstraat, spelled with one “S”.

Huisman advertisement - Feijenoordkade (detail 2)

Written by thehotstepper

September 19, 2009 at 12:07 pm

Brick Houses (by Magdalena)

with one comment

Me on the ErasmusbridgeLet’s first introduce myself:  My name is Magdalena, I am 18 years old and I am from Austria. I am here in Rotterdam for a year doing voluntary work via the European Voluntary Service.I will be active together with Pierre, a volunteer from France, in the Feijenoord district in all kinds of social activities, starting with activities in and around the trattoria Borgo d’Aneto. I am trying to learn the Dutch language and I have a Pierre on the Willemsbruglanguage course from Monday to Friday. I am already able to say some basic sentences: hoe gaat het? Ik begrijp het niet, ik houd van mijn fiets en ik spreek een klein beetje Nederlands. 😉 I am trying to improve, however. Learning the language quickly might be a bit difficult because everyone speaks English very well: so please if you meet me speak Dutch, so I am forced to speak Dutch as well… (but please be a bit patient with me…)

Talking about bicycles. From the first moment I arrived, I noticed that everyone is cycling here, often in a quite dangerous way, which I do appreciate ;). I have my own bicycle here, a typical Dutch bike, een omafiets, and I really had to get used to brakes: on my bicycle I only have backpedals, so the first few days I had difficulties stopping at the right time, at the right spot. I already noticed that cycling is a very efficient and convenient way to get around in Rotterdam. I once went by metro and it wasn’t quicker than by bike. This is partly because everything is flat here, so no hills to climb (especially compared to Austria), only bridges… to get from the city centre to the Feijenoord district.

Something I noticed from the first day I was here, is that you have a lot of brick houses. Maybe for you this is quite normal, but in Austria we have just very few of them. What are the houses in Austria made of you might wonder? I’ll show you a picture of my home town, Villach, so you can see the difference. I cannot decide what kind of houses I prefer: I think Rotterdam looks nice with the brick houses and Villach with the houses that we have there.

Villach, my hometown
Since I have not been here for too long, I don’t have many suggestions of what to do in Rotterdam, but I think there is always something going on; I have already been to the R’Uitmarkt and to the Witte de With festival, which I both enjoyed a lot. I also know certain nice places. I like to sit nearby the water, so sitting at the river Maas, see the people passing by, for instance at the Boompjes, really gives some nice views over the Rotterdam skyline…

View from the Boompjes

Next time I will tell you more about the things I like here and maybe the things that are different from what I am used to in Austria!

Written by thehotstepper

September 14, 2009 at 9:39 am

Eco Park in Feijenoord

leave a comment »


I was cycling when I suddenly noticed a change in the Nijverheidstraat at the crossing with the Zinkerweg. A deserted construction site (I guess now is not a good time to build new houses) has been transformed in a sea of flowers.
Only until I read an article in Metro about Creatief Beheer, I understood who was responsible. What a great initative!

After some surfing on the internet, I found a film about how the park was created. You can check it out on the link below:

You can also read the article in Metro on this site. Below you can see the location and the ‘before’ status.

eco park

Written by thehotstepper

August 24, 2009 at 2:16 pm