A proposal from the Labor Party (PvdA) was unanimously adopted in the municipal council on Thursday. PvdA faction leader Lian Heinhuis believes that the brown pub is part of the soul of Amsterdam. Yet more and more of those “iconic places” are disappearing, such as café Rooie Nelis in the Jordaan or café Verhoeff on the Zeedijk. After all, they must make way for big money, PvdA believes. “As an Amsterdam pub owner nicely described it: the purification of the city is becoming increasingly visible,” says Heinhuis. “The identity of the city should not be determined by who has the most money.”
The council wants the municipality to map the special brown pubs. This makes it possible to monitor how many brown bars are disappearing. Pubs that are not yet such can be designated as municipal monuments. The municipal monumental status means, among other things, that part of the interior of the pub cannot simply be changed. Starting a project at UNESCO should also protect the brown pubs. The combination of various proposals should ensure “that the brown pubs, which are culturally, historically, socially and economically important for our city, will not disappear from the street scene,” says Heinhuis.