New, multifunctional accommodation Schellinkhout more than 1.3 million more expensive. The city council asked to release extra money

In 2020, the city council decided that an MFA should be installed along Dorpsweg in Schellinkhout to replace the current community center De Dregt, the gymnasium and the public elementary school Jan Luyken. These buildings are very outdated and no longer meet today’s requirements. The council believes that it is important that these functions are preserved for the residents of the village. The plan for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stems from the participation project Vitale Dorpen, where residents discussed their wishes for the village with the municipality.

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The existing De Dregt village hall along the Dorpsweg in Schellinhout. This is where the new Ministry of Foreign Affairs should come in.© Photo Mediahuis / Cees Beemster

As well as a new community centre, a new gymnasium and a new school, the plan also includes the construction of a new sports ground at the rear of the site and a new village square at the front. Ten apartments will also be built in the next phase of the plan.

Widely supported

After a careful design phase, according to Drechterland’s municipality, there is now a ‘broadly supported’ plan for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This plan was drawn up after the council had determined the requirement sheet with basic principles and the cost estimate. The municipality involved the school, Berend Botje daycare center, Vital Villages Alliances for Living and Village Functions and the Schellinkhout Foundation in the elaboration.

‘Architect TBE-ZA subsequently adapted the sketch design to adapt it even better to the vision of education and childcare. There is now a preliminary draft of the plan that all involved parties can agree to,’ the municipality states in a press release. “However, more money is needed. This appears from the preliminary draft of the plan. The municipal board of Drechterland requests the council to provide an additional budget of more than 1.3 million euros.

According to the municipality, the investment credit that the council has previously made available to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is too low. “We need more than 1.3 million euros. An extra contribution from childcare and the school board has been taken into account’.

Two reasons

According to Drechterland, there are two reasons for this cost overrun: ‘Due to an increase in construction costs, a higher budget is needed. In addition, the gross floor area in the current design is greater than the dimensions according to the requirements program. The construction costs are therefore higher than in the previous estimate’, reads the explanation.

According to the municipality, there is also a plausible reason for the increased floor area: “An adaptation of the floor area is necessary to ensure that the design of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs lives up to the vision of education and care. This vision means that ‘the youngest child’ will have a place in the central heart of the building, surrounded by a direct connection with the other classes’.

The council’s proposal to make extra budget available to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will be considered at the public committee meeting with the councilors on 10 October. The city council will then make a decision on 24 October on the proposal to invest more than 1.3 million extra in the plan. Earlier this year, the opposition warned that the plan should not become more expensive.

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Councilor Simone Visser (CDA): “With the cuts that have taken place, the design has been simplified quite a bit.”© Archive photo Drechterland

Already strict

Councilor Simone Visser (CDA) says that the construction costs have already been significantly cut to reduce the overrun: “With the savings implemented, the design has been simplified quite a bit. I am pleased that despite these cuts, the current preliminary design is widely supported by all parties involved.”

She adds that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is important to the village: “To keep Schellinkhout vital in the future, a central place for meetings, exercise and education is necessary. This preliminary design fulfills the desired multi-functionality of the building and the vision of education and childcare and also matches the wishes of the residents of Schellinkhout.”

Read also: The arrival of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Schellinkhout not yet certain; opposition to multifunctional housing if it becomes too expensive.

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