Urban Fold

Ownership Presents Ideological Quandry for Christiania

For the famous Danish community of squatters, an offer from the Government to purchase their land proved too good to refuse.

According to Sally McGrane, writing in the New York Times, after years of uncertainty under a conservative-led government in which the 40-year experiment in communal living was threatened with expulsion and a Supreme Court ruling that said the squatters had no legal right to remain on the land, the residents made a pragmatic decision to buy the property - or, as many would have it, to "buy it free."

"The Danish state made it easy, too. Not only did officials offer to sell the land for about $14.5 million, a fraction of what it would be worth if sold commercially, but they also made several provisions to accommodate the Christianites' way of life."

However some residents, present and former, such as Ida Klemann "have a feeling of sorrow that the state forced us to buy it. I thought it was wonderful the Danish state was generous enough to allow this wild little thing to go on living inside itself."

Full Story: Free-Spirited Enclave’s Reluctant Landowners Fear Capitalism’s Harness

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