The expansion of the city of Amsterdam to the west started in the second half of the 19th century. In the beginning of the 20th century Amsterdam made plans to further build out to the west of the city and incorporate surrounding towns like Sloten. In 1934 a plan was presented that envisioned the growth of Amsterdam up to around 1 million inhabitants by the year 2000.
After the Second World War, the city of Amsterdam had its plans ready when lots of new housing was necessary. Neighbourhoods such as Bos & Lommer, Slotermeer, Slotervaart, Geuzenveld and Osdorp were built in this post war period.
Amsterdam West starts at the edge of the city centre at the Nassaukade. In principle it stretches all the way out to Schiphol and a little town called Halfweg. Officially Amsterdam West is divided in Amsterdam West and Amsterdam New West. Amsterdam West also incorporates Culture Park Westergasfabriek. Up until 2014, Amsterdam West was divided into many smaller neighbourhoods each with their own council and own character. Although now fused into one larger district, the unique character of each of the neighbourhoods remains.
Highlights in Amsterdam West
Amsterdam West covers a large area and scattered around this neighbourhood you will find some jewels. One of the main attractions is Westerpark (Western Park) and Culture Park Westergasfabriek. Many small and large festivals are organised in the various venues in Westergasfabriek and in the park itself. Especially in Summer you can enjoy all sorts of music events, food festivals, film festivals and so on. There are family events, but also many niche festivals. Every month there is the fun and diverse “Neighbourfood Market” which we highly recommend you get to if you can, if you love artisanal, organic and delicious food as well as original (often hand made) products.
Just on the other side of the train tracks from Westerpark, in the Spaarndammerbuurt, is Museum Het Schip, a beautiful example of the architectural style the Amsterdam School. And a little further north is Theater Amsterdam. More to the inner eastern area of this large district you will find De Hallen, a converted tram depot. This Amsterdam hotspot houses a cinema, library, a hotel, two restaurants and several shops. The main attraction however is the Foodhallen, a groovy, industrial space where artisanal food stalls, offer delicious snacks and drinks.