City wants to build on former anarchist stronghold

Left-wing groups lost their gathering place in 2007. The city is now tentatively moving forward with a proposal to build youth housing on the site where it once stood

City politicians want to build affordable housing for young people on a contentious plot of land in Copenhagen’s Nørrebro district.

The plot on Jagtvej 69 used to be home to Ungdomshuset, a youth culture centre run by an anarchist and left-wing community that had squatted the building since 1982.

In 1999 the city council sold the building and it ended up in the hands of Faderhuset, a Christian sect. In 2007, Jagtvej 69 became one of Denmark's most famous addresses, when Faderhuset excercised its ownership rights to evict the residents. After a dramatic police action, that involved police commandos being inserted by helicopter, Faderhuset had the building condemned and torn down.

Riots and heartache
The series of events sparked some of the worst riots the city has seen in modern time and resulted in over 700 arrests.

Despite being given a new home on Dortheavej road, the future of Jagtvej 69 is an intensely sensitive subject for Copenhagen’s left-wing groups.

City politicians recognise the sensitivity of the issue, but Sisse Welling (Socialistisk Folkeparti) argued that the empty plot could now be used to address the city’s shortage of affordable housing for young people.

“It’s sad that the plot stands empty as a scar representing bad political decisions,” Welling told Jyllands-Posten. “This way we could give the plot back to the city’s youth.”

READ MORE: Five years after building falls, still nothing forgotten

Jonas Bjørn Jensen (Socialdemokraterne) agreed.

“We don’t want to upset people and it’s okay to say that not just anything should be built on the plot,” Jensen said. “But we can’t afford to let such an attractive plot stand empty. The only thing we can build without causing too much trouble are youth homes.”

The deputy mayor for integration and employment, Anna Mee Allerslev (Radikale), and the culture and recreation mayor, Pia Allerslev (Venstre), supported the idea of building youth housing at the address.

Copenhagen City Council would have to buy the land back off Holdingselskabet af 2010 Aps, which has owned the land since 2010.