The Kostverlorenvaart is situated in Amsterdam West, connecting the Schinkel and the IJ. Since the end of the 19th century the connection to the IJ has been formed by the Kattensloot, Singelgracht and the Westerkanaal.
The Kostverlorenvaart was dug in the 15th century to improve the drainage of the Hoogheemraadschap of Rijnland to the IJ. Since the canal undesirably got in touch with open water during its construction, it needed to get dammed.
The Hoogheemraadschap Rijnland had always been in search of drainage possibilities to reclamate new land.
When in 1413 earl Willem VI gave the authorisation to dig a waterway with drain locks from the Nieuwe Meer and the Schinkel to the IJ, Amsterdam protested tempestuous and not without cause. There existed the danger that enemies could put the city under water by means of that locks.Amsterdam shut down the wetering and despite of a process of the Rijnland the wetering remained closed. As a result of that, the locks of the wetering became unusable and the construction a waste of money connected to a loss of costs/expenses. That is how the name Kostverloren is relucidated.
Some decades later the city Amsterdam dug a canal from the Singel along the Heiligeweg (the Heiligewegse canal) to the Kostverlorenvaart and as a result a big shipping connection arose between Amsterdam and the Haarlemmermeer and even further to Leiden.
Haarlem was not really satisfied with the situation, because Amsterdam did not pay any taxes. Therefore in 1434 the Haarlemmers put piles in the Schinkel to prevent the passage from passing. By order of the earl of the Netherlands a damming was placed between the Kostverlorenvaart and the Schinkel.
To enable at least small shipping between Amsterdam and the Haarlemmermeer the Overtoom was constructed. The district around it is called the Overtoomse buurt.
The Kostverlorenvaart is still used for the transport of goods, a function which the city grachten have lost.
When driving along the route Schinkel Ð Kostverlorenvaart Ð Kattensloot Ð Singelgracht Ð Westerkanaal you can see a lot of moveable bridges: Schinkelbrug (ring road south (A10)), Zeilbrug, Fietsbrug Vondelpark, Overtoomse lock, Kinkerbrug, cradle bridge, Beltbrug, bridge cost losing streets, cat ditch bridge, Willemsbrug, Spoorbrug Singelgracht and the bridge at the Van Diemenstraat.
Up to 1921 the Kostverlorenvaart formed the border to the municipalities Sloten, Nieuwer Amstel and Amsterdam. Nowadays it is mainly the border between the municipalities De Baarsjes and Oud West.
The The Kostverlorenvaart by night The Kostverlorenvaart during the winter time De Baarsjes The Kostverlorenvaart in the year 1958 The Baarsjesweg along the Kostverlorenvaart Buildings along the Kostverlorenvaart