Oslo: The H40/Vestbredden history (so far…)

H40 and the rest of the whole city-block had by then stod abandoned for quite a number of years, but lots of needles and garbage witnessed about provisionally inhabitants.

The years has passed Now there are 12-15 inhabitants at Vestbredden. A part of the building was exeptionaly damaged by leakage and thus infested with fungus. By removing the old insulation (wich was dirt) and put on new floor-boards we seem to have kept this problem at bay. Additionaly a pice of the fundament had been washed away, with the consequence that the whole of the south-eastern corner was in an imiminent danger of collapsing. Fact is that if we had not mended these structural injuries, the whole caboodle would have crumbled with in a half a year. We also have plans to put a new cover on the roof with in the next few years. At the same time we will seek to replace a suport beem that was totaly rothen away. For the present we have compensated the damaged component. In July 2003 we got the firedepartement on our backs and has afterwards made an effort to have the building meet the minimum fire-safety standards. As we are in no way easy to remove, Statsbygg therefore treated us with a cheap fire-alarm system. We have worked hard to make this house inhabitable and we do not intend to let us selves be removed peacefully.

We have gotten neighbours The cultural center Hausmania has been a tenant in Hausmannsgate 34 the last few years. By a hair-raising contract Statsbygg has tried to slide the responsibility of governmental administration onto a collective of artists. The artists at Hausmania has vision’s about an open and vivid cultural centre along the west-bank at Akerselva, an alternative to the “cultural-center” (the opera) that is to be buildt in Bjørvika. The people at Hausmania hopes to construct a artistic melting pot, where joy of crativity and enthusiasm is more important than initial capital.

Black clouds In 2003, however, Statsbygg became imposed to market the entire city-block at highest bidder. Minister Norman, then head of the Work – and administrasjondepartement and with that also Statsbygg, was in position to potentialy do a good deal to ease condition for people in the aerea. A recommendation by the minister to adopt a policy that would have opened for directed sale, and below marked price, would have been a solid suport. But kjipe Viktor seemed to lack any understanding of social-politics – when he stated that directed sale was by no means a option.

Vultures Our city block is a potential pearl in central Oslo, located just a coblestone-throw away from Akerselva. And thus the property was soon to be sold to Aspelin – Ramm co. Parts of the oposition at the cityhall has conventionaly displayed a bit apprehension for the housing pproblems in the norwegian capital. Unfortunatly the right (Høyre), liberals (FrP) and the fundamentalist christians (KrF) has for long allegorized a constant borguise constipation. Now it seems that the christians has comprehended that art and culture buys votes. Prior to Christmas 2003 the cityhall resolved that Oslo commune would bid on the property, for the purpose of bailing out the cultural activity at Hausmania. A good deal of insecurtity was noted about majority at the townhall actual desire to carry out the bargain. But as for now the local government kept theire words in this issue and in May 2004 the Hausmann was bought for the sum of 12 millions.

Future Although the sales contract allegedly consists a clause stateing that the entire area is to be regulated for cultural purposes, it now seems highly posible that oslo commune intends to give us a legal contract. We on our part hope to come to an agreement on governmental financial suport and loan, that will alow us to buy and secure our home, Hausmannsgate 40.

How can we asociate our selves with a society that will not house us?

http://squat.net/en/news/aksjon060999.html http://squat.net/vestbredden/ http://hausmania.org http://www.boligaksjonen.no


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