Welcome to Wat is er mis met deze steeg?

This blog was started in 2008 when our alley, the Oudezijds Armsteeg, was a big garbage mountain mess. In 2012, we started the street gardens (geveltuinen), and an art gallery in the alley, with the help of the Gemeente Amsterdam. And now, our street is totally different. We decided to keep this blog for “historic” reference. To learn more about our rubbish struggles, please read about the Street corner history. We started another “positive” blog,; unfortunately it has not been updated in a long while

Unhappily, in 2022, we are having a HUGE problem with hardcore drug dealers. So this website has been restarted. The writing is mostly in English (or a a form of Dunglish).

Protected: Dealers, dealers, dealers

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There is no “dealer network”

I’ve been complaining that the dealers are always here.

But, they do periodically, poof!, disappear. Then moments later, a police car sails down the street. Of course, it all looks peaceful and civilised. But within minutes the dealers are back again.

I always imagined that there was some sort of Dealer Network going on. It felt like one dealer might have been ringing another to warn them.

But, it’s much simpler than that.

At night the Warmoesstraat is blocked off: no cars, trucks or whatever are permitted, except for police and other emergency vehicles. So if a car, with its bright headlights, is seen in the distance, then the obvious conclusion is that it must be the police. Simple deduction…

Maybe the police need to think of another way to check the area?

Ze spelen muziek op straat

Hmm, I think I’ve discovered something.

Ringing the police to complain about the dealers and junkies can be a frustrating experience. You know they’re dealing/using, because they’ve been hanging around for ages, but that’s not illegal. And, more often than not, the bad guys have scattered if/when the police approach. Or even worse, your complaint is so vague, you just know that the police will probably ignore it.

BUT, if someone is playing loud music on the street, that is a concrete complaint that the police can deal with. So the magic words, “Ze spelen muziek op straat”, does seem to get a prompt reaction (within 5 minutes!) from the police.

An infestation of dealers

So, I didn’t really expect that we would have to use this blog again. It’s been pretty peaceful since the street gardens were installed. Just the odd problem with piled up garbage, but nothing like it used to be. For that we’re thankful. 

But, in the last few months, our corner has been infested, inundated and overrun by dealers. We’ve never seen anything like this before. There is a CONSTANT dealer presence on our corner from early in the evening until about 8am the next morning. There is usually at least one or two lurking around but often there are 4-8, or more, of them hanging around together. To be honest, I don’t object to their preferred method of employment, but the noise and the intimidating atmosphere when a whole bunch of them get together is overwhelming at times. They act as if they own the street, and that is what I strongly object to. 

It’s probably hard to imagine what the constant noise is like. Normally at this time of year it is reasonably quiet in this part of the city after about 11pm, in particular during the week. But now there is a constant LOUD dealer-related noise from the street and the alley.

A small example is this two-minute recording, which was made at 4:23am on a Wednesday morning. Seriously, there should be no one around at this time of night.

The first part of the recording gives an impression of the sort of “background” noise that is constantly present.

The second part of the recording is when a loud argument erupts, followed by the insistent deal that (presumedly) goes down. 

So I guess it’s time to start blogging again.

Thank you for visiting!

This blog was started in 2008 when our alley, the Oudezijds Armsteeg, was a big garbage mountain mess. In 2012, we started the street gardens (geveltuinen), and an art gallery in the alley, with the help of the Gemeente Amsterdam. And now, several years later, our street is totally different. But we have decided to keep this blog for “historic” reference. To learn more about our struggles, please read about the Street corner history.

We started another blog,; unfortunately it has not been updated in a long while. But you can view the online version of the Art Gallery

Rubbish report July 15—July 19

On Friday afternoon there are about 10 bags of rubbish to start the weekend. Plus a box with one or more restaurant-sized egg cartons (photos [1] and [2]). By the end of the weekend there are about 20-25 bags of rubbish [3]. Unfortunately none of the bags of rubbish were taken away during the weekend.

By Monday evening several restaurants have started adding their rubbish. Over the course of the evening there are multiple restaurant-sized olive oil cans and mayonaise buckets that get added, and a stupendous amount of cardboard boxes (beer, meat, wine, etc etc etc), [4]-[7].

At about 22:00 on Monday evening one of the restaurants starts bringing out their rubbish. After he has finished there are another 20-odd bags of rubbish and egg cartons that have been added [8]-[9]. I have a video of the “crime” and have forwarded a link to the video to the gebiedsbeheerder and handhaving.

Finally by Tuesday morning we wake up to the sight of a rubbish mountain which is as tall as an adult, extends 3 metres into the alley, and is about 2 metres wide. [10]-[12]

On a happier note, all of the dead bikes have been removed. And that was within one week of ringing and complaining about them. That’s progress!

Rubbish report June 29—July 1

Okay, I haven’t been this angry in a long long time. Lots of photos this time.

Starts off “normally” on Wednesday with bags of rubbish illegally dumped, a dead couch, cardboard boxes (photo [1]). By Wednesday evening the couch had been picked up, plus most of the bags of rubbish (thank you). Unfortunately now a TV, several chairs and more bags of rubbish congregate [2]. By Thursday morning the rubbish was mostly picked up, but TV and chairs still there [3]. Irritatingly enough when I rang Grofvuil early Thursday morning, the bored, disinterested woman told me that it wouldn’t be picked up until Friday (grrrr). By Thursday evening, TV etc still there, plus about 10-15 bags of rubbish [4]-[5]. But our problems were only just starting [6].

At about 9 o’clock in the evening 2 young guys (Pink Shirt and Grey Shirt) started dumping their entire house on our corner [7]-[21]. By the time they have finished there is: another dead couch, a double mattress, floor boards, tables, chairs, and an unbelievable number of open bags and boxes of rubbish. The resulting mess extends 4 metres into the alley, is higher than an adult and is 1.5 metres wide.

By Friday morning… Ach. I don’t even want to talk about Friday morning [22]-[24]. Suffice to say, that I lost it completely when I couldn’t even enter the alley with my bike. I started throwing bags of rubbish onto the Warmoesstraat, until I could at least reach my own front door–much to the consternation of my neighbours (is she crazy? Yes, you bloody bet.)

One of the builders was trying to stop me tossing bags of rubbish onto the Warmoesstraat. At one point he said, “Moet ik de politie bellen?”, and I just screamed at him, “Ja, GRAAG, bel de politie!” Surprised the shit out of him! I think that’s when he backed off, worried that I really was a bit crazy!

The rubbish guys were also angry and refused to pick it up. They came back later with a separate truck and picked up the rubbish (taking about 15 minutes to clean it up). The grofvuil was picked up about an hour later, they were also busy for about 20 minutes.

Okay, I also have a video of the anti-social dumpers. They came from either Warmoesstraat 15 or 17 (I’m pretty sure it was 17). Unfortunately the video is too large to show here on the blog, but I have forwarded it to the gebiedsbeheerder. Here is a fuzzy close-up of their faces:

Our thanks go to the Reiniging, Handhaving and the Gebiedsbeheerder for clearing this up as quickly as humanly possible.

I spit on Pink Shirt and Grey Shirt. Anti-social little bastards.

Rubbish Report June 26—28

About 10 bags of illegal rubbish have gathered by early Sunday evening (photos [1] and [2]). By Monday morning they have been joined by another 10-20 bags [3]. During the day the pile grows bigger and bigger, until by the evening the pile is as high as the garbage bin, extends 2.5 metres into the alley and is about 3/4 metre wide [4]-[6]. By late evening some idiot has thrown their mattress/bed there as well [7].

On Tuesday morning (currently every morning) the alley is blocked on one side by a truck [8]. We cannot exit the alley via the OZ Voorburgwal. Our only exit is via the Warmoesstraat. Unfortunately that way out is pretty well blocked by the rubbish [9]-[12]. By now, the pile is 1.5 metres high, extends 3-4 metres into the alley and between the bikes, motor bikes and rubbish mountain we have barely 50 centimetres where we can just get past. This is a fire hazard!! Photo [11] shows the Guldenhandsteeg, strangely free of household rubbish.

But I’m very pleased to report that most of the dead bikes have GONE! Thank you!

Rubbish Report June 20—21

This series of photos shows how rubbish-free the Warmoesstraat is on a rubbish morning. Why’s that? Because everyone dumps their rubbish in the OZ Armsteeg.