From Iceland — Neglected Houses In Reykjavík

Neglected Houses In Reykjavík

Published July 13, 2020

Catherine Magnúsdóttir
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According to the Residents Association of Central Reykjavík, numerous houses in the neighborhood have fallen into a state of decay after being neglected for decades.

The organization calls on construction representatives, health authorities, city representatives and members of Parliament to arrange it so that homeowners can’t leave their houses empty and neglected for a long amount of time, in a statement sent to the media yesterday.

“In the city center of Reykjavik there are dozens of old houses and some of them have been empty and neglected for decades. The conditions of many of these houses pose a danger, their environment is shabby and unhealthy and they’ve repeatedly caught fire and this has endangered the surrounding estates,” says the association in their statement, according to Vísir.

“The reasons for neglecting these houses are of course many-fold, but the current situation is unbearable for the neighbors of these abandoned houses, as well as preventing them from being used for residential or commercial activities and some of them are also age-protected. The Residents Association of Central Reykjavík calls on construction representatives and health authorities to use the tools the office has to prevent this behaviour, and on the city’s representatives and parliamentarians in northern Reykjavík to push for laws and regulations to be made so clear that homeowners cannot leave their houses empty and neglected for a long time. ”

A report by the association also contains several examples of houses that have stood empty for a long time, including a timber house at Þórsgata 3 that was built in the early 20th century and a stone house at Klapparstígur 19 which was built in 1879 and is the only one of its kind left in Skuggahverfi.

Special attention is also paid to Esjuberg, the house at Þingholtsstræti 29a which was originally called Villa Frieda and went through several owners (including entrepreneurs, a Norwegian painter and an investment company) before eventually becoming uninhabitable due to unfinished interior constructions. It was built in 1916 and is listed.

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