Stories of Dordrecht (No. 28): From demolition to new construction
Hardly anywhere else has the redevelopment of the old inner city been tackled as thoroughly as in Dordrecht, not only because of the considerable pauperisation, but also because of the ambitions of the city council. The Dordrecht inner city was to become the beating heart of a rapidly developing region. For this, it was necessary to improve and modernise the connections with the new suburbs and with the surrounding villages. According to the redevelopment plan, about 1,900 homes and other buildings, including dozens of monuments, would have to be demolished. The demolition of the mostly dilapidated houses was successful, but it took a long time before all the areas that had been cleared were filled in again.
It was only around 1980 that another form of urban renewal took over. But for large parts of the Bleijenhoek, the Steenstraat and its surroundings and the Boogjes, it was too late then. The writer Bert te Kiefte poses the question: Was redevelopment inevitable? Or did the city centre fall prey to an irresponsible urge of the city council of the time to renew?