In that time the purpose was to offer poor people a possibility to grow their own food.
Nowadays 29 allotment gardens-complexes are sections of the BvV; 27 of them are situated on the territory of the City of Amsterdam, one near the city of Almere in the "Flevopolder" and one in the suburb Landsmeer.
These 29 complexes together count about 6.000 allotment gardens with a total area of
280 hectares (= about 692 acres)
If you want to rent an allotment you need to be officially registrated as a resident of the Netherlands.
The smallest complex counts 41, the biggest 442 gardens. The sizes of the individual gardens vary from about 150 m2 (180 sq.yards) to about 400 m2 (482 sq.yards).
There are three different kinds of gardens, namely:
A. Kitchen gardens, the smallest gardens in which the gardeners grow their own vegetables, potatoes and fruits. Only small barns are allowed.
B. Allotment gardens with a small wooden home without permission for overnight stay
C. Allotment gardens with wooden home (maximum 28 m2) and permission for overnight stay during the period from April 1st up to September 30st incl.
The rental fees are different too; for the A-complexes about € 140,00 , for the B-complexes € 275,00 en for the C-complexes € 455,00 a year.
If there already is a house and/or a barn on the garden on a B or C complex this(these) has(have) to be bought for a price that will be executed by special taxation-commission.
There is no concrete information about the distance between home and garden, although the municipality of Amsterdam has the intention to create garden facilities of the A-complexes near by the housing estates.
Gardeners of the B-complexes are dependent on their own or the public transport facilities. So they will try to get a garden on a complex that is within easy reach of their home.
Those on the C-complexes are less dependent of traffic facilities and use their garden like a kind of "second home"; they stay on the garden with the family during a long period and prefer a complex which give them the idea of being "in the country".
In their cases the distance doesn´t play a part.
However.... even more allotment garden-complexes are forced to move to locations on the outskirts, because the local authorities can make the ground pay by using the allotment locations for house building. This fight between the gardeners and the authorities began short after Worldwar II and still continues.
As told the 29 complexes are sections of the BvV, which is the only incorporated organisation. In spite of this central organisation each complex has its own board, which takes care of the daily procedure on the complex, like the rent of gardens, selling and buying gardenhomes, observance of rules, the maintenance of the complex, the gardens, the machines and the club-houses.
The central organisation BvV rents the allotment grounds from the local authorities and is responsible for paying the fees, insurance a.s.o. The BvV is the official conversation partner with the authorities too.
He or she, who want to rent a garden on one of the complexes has to be of age and has to become a member of the BvV. He/she has to respect the regulations of the BvV and those of the complex.
That means among others that he/she has to take part in the maintenance-activities of the total complex, that he/she follows the instructions for paying in time, for giving no trouble to fellow-gardeners on the complex, for keeping his/her own garden in good condition and being careful with the environment.
There isn´t a special law for allotment gardens so the national and local laws apply to all the gardeners, the boards of the complexes and the board of the BvV.
The question about the basic policy on allotment gardens of the municipal administration can hardly be answered because Amsterdam has not only one municipal administration. On the contrary, Amsterdam has about 15 smaller administrations and their policy on allotment gardens depends on their local political "colour".
However generality the BvV meets a lot of sympathy and co-operation from the authorities that have, of course, to take care of other interests too like, for instance, accommodation, traffic and others.
For Amsterdam is growing bigger and bigger and the ground on which it is situated doesn´t.
For your complete information: Beside the 29 garden-complexes of the BvV there are about 4 or 5 more complexes in Amsterdam not being sections of the BvV; they have their own society-structure.
Once or twice a year the boards of these societies and the BvV have a conference for exchanging experiences and talking problems.
The BvV is, together with all the allotments in the Netherlands, member of the Dutch Allotment Organisation, the AVVN at Utrecht.