Time Travel: Biltstraat

Biltstraat 1947 (Het Utrechts Archief)It seems appropriate that I came across this photo of Biltstraat recently, as this is one of the only streets I see these days. The wine bar and my freelance writing are keeping me very busy. This photo is relatively recent, dating back to 1947. In some ways the street has changed little. Amusingly, even the awning looks to be the same style on the second-from-the-left building. The fifth building with the bay window looks nearly identical, as does the larger ninth building and everything in between.

The street used to be lined with trees, but those were felled during the war, I believe, but they’re gradually being reintroduced, which makes taking comparison pictures a bit more difficult. The biggest difference, perhaps, are the defined bike paths now on each side of the street. They’re the reddish strip seen in the current photo. Amazingly, it looks like I managed to find almost the exact same spot to snap this photo as the original. Mine just includes a few more rooftops, a bit of sunny, blue sky, and the other side of the street.Biltstraat
To show just how little the street has changed in almost 70 years, here’s a photo I took from the front door of our wine bar, Vino Veritas, earlier this week. In black and white, just a few steps up from where the original photo was taken (directly across from the third/fourth buildings), everything looks surprisingly similar. The grand old dame is holding up well! Biltstraat
First photo via Het Utrechts Archief

8 thoughts on “Time Travel: Biltstraat

  1. so nice! Gosh….I am from Houston where they knock down almost all historic buildings to put up new stuff. How lucky you found the old pics….great post

  2. The B & W pictures almost look like they could be of any town here in the USA but when I look at the color picture and see the colorful buildings then it becomes obvious that it isn’t America. That is what always strikes me when returning from Europe is how drab and colorless American buildings are. Hope all is going well with your new business.

    • You’re probably right. I’ve gotten so used to the numerous brick buildings here in the Netherlands — even the streets and sidewalks are brick! — that I sometimes miss the other colors. Still, with so many buildings crammed together, there are often a variety of colors to help each stand out a bit more. Italian cities like Bologna really know how to use color in their buildings. Gorgeous! And speaking of Bologna, our wine bar is doing quite well for its first few weeks. Thanks!

    • I love when certain spots around town are so recognizable, whether it’s 70 years later or 200 years later.

      VV and my regular writing job are keeping me super busy. Monday is my only day off. So far I’ve used my Mondays to be as lazy as possible. Some day I may see other parts of the city once again. 🙂

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