‘High rent, poor quality’
“There is a shortage of student rooms, and students spend months looking for rooms, sometimes in vain. Rents are too high, with landlords often overcharging. The quality of the rooms may be poorer than you’d expect for that much money,” Engberts wrote about Rotterdam’s student accommodation. PvdA hopes the debate will result in some clarity on whether there is sufficient student accommodation available, and whether the Mayor and Municipal Executive are making enough of an effort to guarantee that all students will find a place to stay.
PvdA requested that a debate be held due to ongoing arguments between Erasmus University and the Rotterdam municipal authorities regarding plans to create an additional one thousand student rooms on the Woudestein Campus. These plans may not be realised because insufficient room was reserved for student housing in the draft zoning plan for the area. Erasmus University was quite dismayed by this draft zoning plan.
Baele writes angry letter
Kristel Baele, the President of EUR’s Executive Board, wrote a letter on the subject to Rotterdam’s municipal council, in which she emphasised that the university and the local authorities have signed an agreement designed to improve ‘Rotterdam’s ability to attract international students to this research centre’. Baele stated that a healthy supply of student accommodation is a ‘decisive selection criterion’ for international students.
The debate will take place on 1 February. Erasmus Magazine previously provided an analytical look at Rotterdam’s shortage of accommodation. Last September it was found that the increase in the number of international students was causing a shortage of student rooms in Rotterdam. As a result, international students who had come to Rotterdam were forced to stay at hostels.