Smoke and smog

In the previous century, the labourers were woken every day by the NDSM shipyard sirens. The 1,324 homes in Tuindorp Oostzaan (garden city) lay in the Noorder IJpolder against the former Waterlandse Zeedijk (dyke), not far from the once biggest shipyard of Western Europe.

 

Orionstraat quiet and deserted, 1924

A city village

Up to 1945, Tuindorp Oostzaan lay in isolation in the fields. Amsterdam city centre, like the rest of North Amsterdam, was only accessible by ferry. Luckily, the garden city had its own facilities: shops, schools, a bath house and churches. There was a lot of greenery and space for associations in the Zonnehuis (1932) (house of the sun), a national monument whose interior is largely intact.

 

Rowing through the street, 1960

Flood

The flood during the night of 14 January 1960 caused by a break in the dyke left a deep mark. The inhabitants were woken in the morning by the police and three hours later the water had risen to two metres. Some people had to be evacuated by boat. Rumour has it that the government’s compensation for damage was so generous that people joked “Give us our daily bread, and if possible, a flood too.”

 

Zonneplein with Zonnehuis, 2008

Museum residence

The inhabitants of Tuindorp Oostzaan have always resisted its demolition. The village was renovated in 2003. During the renovations a house was found to be entirely in its original state. This ‘Museumwoning ’ (museum residence) is located at Meteorenweg 174 and transports visitors 70 years back in time.