0694-Nijmegen: protesting farmers

Dozens of farmers on tractors stopped by the police and sent away from Nijmegen.

Tractoren onder politiebegeleiding op de Graafseweg in Nijmegen.

Thursday 09 July 2020, 09:00pm. Dozens of farmers on tractors drove honking through Nijmegen on Thursday evening. They seemed on their way to the center, but were stopped by police on the Graafsebrug. Then they were escorted out. On the Graafsebrug over the railway, near the city center, the police blocked the farmers’ way. Before that they were honking on the Graafseweg. It is not known whether the farmers wanted to occupy the Keizer Karelplein as before this year. At the time, the Lord Mayor of Nijmegen, Hubert Bruls, did not like an unannounced protest in the square. The police also blocked the access roads to Takenhofplein. That way they could get the farmers out of town quickly. The farmers probably came mainly from villages such as Nederasselt and Schaijk.

Boeren op het Takenhofplein

To the house of “nitrogen fighter” Vollenbroek
A group of farmers also came to Nijmegen last Tuesday. Then they wanted to drive to the home of “nitrogen fighter” Johan Vollenbroek, but they were stopped by the police and taken to a site near the Pathé cinema near Lent. There the farmers discussed with Vollenbroek, who had been picked up at home by the police. Farmers are still allowed to demonstrate with a tractor in this region, while protests with tractors have now prohibited it in other regions.

There are nation wide protesting farmers of the new rebellion organisation “Farmers Defence Force”. In the provinces Groningen, Friesland and Drenthe their manifestations are now forbidden by a court order.  The farmers are still obstructing highways, distribution centers of large firms all over The Netherlands, and last but not least the Governamental Center in The Hague. In the beginning (December 2019) they could count on the support of a large part of the Dutch population; when the Corona outbreak came (first case on 27 February 2020), they continued their activities. And that was not appreciated very much by the Dutch.

Mrs. Carola Schouten (b. 06 October 1977 ‘s-Hertogenbosch, unmarried mother of Thomas Schouten b. 2001), Deputy Prime Minister of the Netherlands and Minister of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality, is a daughter of a farmer herself. She does not shy away from discussions with farmers. On Wednesday she had to call off a working visit to farmers in the province of Zeeland, as the police advised her to stop the visit because of intercepted threats.

0688-Concerts start up after 5 months.

The Symphonic Orchestra Overijssel & Gelderland “PHION” and the Chamber Music Society start up after a Covid-19 silence of over five months. Both institutes had to cancel their last two concerts of the 2019/2020 season. These concerts are booked for the 2020/2021 seasons, so that we have a lot of concerts to attend! There is now a trial going on with audiences of 35 people max, concerts by small ensembles of members of the orchestra, such as a brass ensemble, a small string orchestra etc. The concerts last 1,5 hour and there are drinks and snacks afterwards.

0680-Nijmegen/Graafseweg

Important traffic artery in Nijmegen has narrowed further from four to two runways.

De Graafseweg in Nijmegen staduitwaarts.

The Graafseweg is further narrowed. In the future, the section between the railway bridge and the crossing with the Wolfskuilseweg will also go from four to two carriageways. The Nijmegen city council decided that on Wednesday evening. The narrowing creates space for a bus lane inland, cycle paths on both sides of the road and a parallel lane on the Willemskwartier side. Work will start as soon as the renovation of the Waal Bridge is completed, probably next year.
After an earlier narrowing of the Graafseweg between Keizer Karelplein and the railway bridge, the approach between the bridge (crossing Rozenstraat) and Wolfkuilseweg was long discussed. Months ago, traffic alderman Harriët Tiemens proposed to reduce that trajectory from four to two jobs, but found no majority on the council. Coalition party SP put his heels in the sand. As expected, the majority came up on Wednesday evening with the plan to expand the Graafseweg on the relevant section into a two-lane road with room for a bus lane. The PvdA recently announced that it embraces that option. Because there is also support from coalition parties D66 and GroenLinks, the shovel can soon be grounded.

Spandoeken op Graafsewg ivm 4baans/2baans dispuut. Nijmegen, 18-11-2019 .

In recent months, the municipality had seven scenarios for the Graafseweg calculated. The bottom line: at worst, narrowing down would lose fifteen seconds of travel time. VVD councilor Maarten Bakker criticizes this calculation: “The city is growing, but the Graafseweg is narrowing. That road is filled with eyes and the city is locked. How will residents of Dukenburg still get to the center?”
According to Ammar Selman (PvdA), people who do not have to be in the center can detour via, for example, the S100. “This way the Graafseweg will remain accessible as Nijmegen grows. The city is not locked. There will be more space for public transport and cyclists on the Graafseweg. Moreover, the quality of life for local residents improves.”
Incidentally, the entire Graafseweg is not thickened. The last section out of town – between Wolfskuilseweg and Neerbosscheweg – retains four lanes.

0673-St Stephan Church

König organ: dazzling after restoration!

For more than three months, the wonderful craftsmen of Wolters Ovink from Deventer worked with passion on the majestic König organ. On April 10, the finishing touches were made to the gilding of the König organ in the Stevenskerk and our city has – literally – a showpiece! We would like to thank all donors who contributed to this project. They will soon receive an invitation to a special meeting (entirely according to the required rules) to come and admire the result. Thanks in part to you, we were able to finance a large part of this project.

Pierre and I donated 20 gilded pieces; due to the Corona virus the church has no income from visitors, exhibitions, concerts, and rent for weddings and funerals. 

0657-Spring arrives

Spring arrives in our back yard.

0632-Nijmegen

Nijmegen parking garage is a homeless hotel: beds made in a technical room.
The parking garage under the Basic Fit gym on Tweede Walstraat in Nijmegen is used by homeless people to sleep, use alcohol and drugs and poop. Residents of the apartment complex above that use the garage are annoyed by the unwanted wanderer hotel and feel unsafe. On Tuesday, two uninvited residents were caught and the garage sent out by the municipality’s and police officers with their whole property. The two gliders had made it easy for themselves. In a technical room, no larger than one by two meters, lay cushions, blankets, bottles of liquor and beer cans. The loft was used by a man and a woman. According to a resident of the complex who was at the eviction, it was about Poland. It seems that they have been using the space for a long time, because all kinds of personal items were stored, such as bags and shoes. In addition to the loft there was a great smell of excrement and urine. Dora Raijmakers’ car (84) is right next to the technical room and the shit and pee place. “I haven’t just been walking to the parking garage lately,” she says.

Anxious
She is afraid of finding someone and that fear is not unjustified. In the past few months she has already driven people away twice who do not belong in the apartment complex. One man was running joints at her door. When she spoke to him, he said he was visiting another resident of the complex, but the resident did not know the man. “I’m really scared,” she says. Her husband died not long ago and since then she lives alone in the apartment. She fears that somebody will be in her house one day. She doesn’t tell her children what’s going on. “I would not dare to do that. I am ashamed.”

Children
The complex has around 15 households. Among the residents are the elderly, but also families with young children. “They can find anything”, says a resident who wants to remain anonymous. “Beer cans, butts, but also needles. I have disposable gloves in my car that I can use to clean up the mess in the parking garage.” Several times a month residents see trash from people who have hung in the garage or elsewhere in the complex. That sleep is also happening since about four months. It is a mystery to the residents how the intruders enter. The door to the parking garage is forced and can be pushed open with a big beech, but a drop is needed to enter the building at all.

Camera images
A neighbor has seen that homeless people go inside with a pass. This fits in with the camera images that show that two men with a sports bag walk in as if they have a key. A third man who is also trying to slip in, is just too late. Every now and then, intruders are caught. “Then they pretend they are visiting or they say they are renting something here.” The uninvited guests scare multiple residents. The anonymous resident knows that some people park their cars elsewhere in order not to have to go to the parking garage. “It’s too crazy for words. You are no longer safe in your own home.”

0631-Graafseweg’s headache file: traffic lanes.

We have presently a big problem regarding the traffic in front of our houses. Presently there are city inbound 2 traffic lanes and 1 cycling path. At the other site, where the city outbound traffic is, we have 2 traffic lanes Graafseweg outbound, 1 traffic exit lane to the left (Groenestraat), 1 traffic exit lane to the right (Wolfkuilseweg) plus a separate service road annex cycling path:

On a rainy 10 January 2020, the present situation, city inbound.

The people, living at this part of the Graafseweg, have limited parking space (unless you ha a parking lot at your property, but that is limiting the size of your frontyard). And because the Graafseweg is a straight connection from the outskirts of the city towards the city center, this track (50Km/31M) invites to speed limiting. Public transport (bus lines 2, 99, 331) have to mix with the normal traffic, creating sometimes hilarious situations at the 3 nearby busstops. But… there is hope. The city council decided last week, that the present situation is too stessful and too dangerous. And there is a plan…

The same part of the Graafseweg as on the picture “10 January 2020”, but now with 1 inbound traffic lane, 1 inbound bus lane, a cycling path and the enlarged footpath. Between the bus lane and the traffic lane there is a “green separation wall”. City outbound the same situation, but in addition there will be a parking lot at the service road.

0618-Nijmegen

A Merry Christmas from

Railway station Nijmegen.

 

0614-Holiday travel

0607-Holiday travel