Residents want Gay Pride moved off Amsterdam's Prinsengracht
Residents of the Prinsengracht have written a letter to Amsterdam Mayor Eberhard van der Laan requesting that the annual Gay Pride canal parade be moved to Amstel next year. They are tired of the noise and pollution the parade brings with it.
"We are not against the parade but against how it currently goes down", Marianne Spierings writes on behalf of 40 residents, Het Parool reports. She lists a number of reasons, such as the noise levels, smoking generators and residents not being able to reach the waterfront because of the crowds.
"The moored boats are three rows deep, earlier twin beams were towed away. Meanwhile huge amounts are earned and afterwards all the junk disappears into the water. If you say something about it, you are scolded", she writes. "We would like to leave our canal on this day, but we do not want our homes to be damaged, pissed and puked on." The municipality is letting the residents down. "The overflowing portable toilets were only emptied on Monday, the garbage only collected on Tuesday night."
The residents suggest that the parade be moved to the Amstel next year, a space designed for public used.
Diana Landveld, spokesperson for the municipality of Amsterdam, confirmed to the newspaper that the letter has been received and that each of the signatories will receive a response. "Those answers we won't make public. Therefore I can not comment on the content of our response at this time."
Danny de Vries, spokesperson for the Amsterdam Gay Pride, told Het Parool that the organization regrets that the boat parade is not enjoyable for the residents. "In our evaluation meetings with the municipality we will deal with this type of proposal. It is ultimately the municipality that issues the permit."