Amsterdam wants to keep rapid grocery delivery services out of residential areas
Rapid grocery delivery services are no longer welcome in residential areas in Amsterdam. The city administrators want new rules for dark stores - these services' distribution centers - since the provisioning and collection of groceries by delivery workers cause nuisance for local residents.
The city administration believes that the quality of life in the neighborhoods should come first. That is why the rapid delivery companies, which promise to deliver orders within minutes, must move to areas where they cause as little nuisance as possible. That means the city will only allow dark stores in residential areas and mixed neighborhoods, which contain homes and businesses, in very exceptional cases - if it is not at the expense of the quality of life in the neighborhood.
Earlier, the mayor and aldermen decided to halt the opening of new dark stores for the time being, given the rapid rise of companies like Gorillas, Getir, and Flink. "We have seen that the current locations of rapid delivery companies with dark stores cause a lot of nuisance for the neighborhood. We have found that it is necessary to make policy," said responsible alderman Marieke van Doornink.
In a response, Gorillas called it "absurd that the municipality is making this decision" because the delivery service considers itself of "added value" to the city of Amsterdam. "Thousands of riders work at Gorillas as an employee, more than a third of all Amsterdammers are our customers, and we work together with dozens of Amsterdam entrepreneurs. Moreover, our service is a sustainable alternative to the delivery vans that block the canals and streets every day," the company said.
Gorillas further said it has been "responsive to feedback from those involved" and "learning lessons is our top priority." But according to the company, the municipality of Amsterdam has "always avoided constructive dialogue."
Getir called the Amsterdam municipality's decision "very unjust." According to the company, rapid grocery delivery services operate similarly to pizza delivery services, "and yet our industry is being treated unfairly." According to the company, the decision limits consumers' choices and "will also eliminate thousands of jobs created by this industry, without the sector having a chance to improve and prove itself."
The city council still has to approve the proposal.
Reporting by ANP