Den Helder city center
2006, Den Helder, The Netherlands

Den Helder: a city of 58,000 inhabitants located in the north of Holland, between the North Sea and the Wadden Sea and home to Netherlands main naval base. During the last few decades the city has been plagued by a steady decline in population, a neglected innercity and the loss of its relation to the surrounding sea. The task ahead for Den Helder is to rethink her content and character as a Maritime City.

In our design to revitalize the city centre of Den Helder and reposition it towards the sea, we proposed several key objectives. In the city center our main ambition is to restore the  existing urban tissue, housing and public space, densifying the existing commercial program and the addition of a central park. Our ambitions for the harbor and its docks is to develop a full-fledged and complete city quarter with a mix of functions, dwellings, commercial and recreation. Central to this development is the embedding of a strong cultural program, spearheaded by the development of a new theater at the former naval base.

One of the first projects that is now under construction is the new city park, characterized by its prominent trees. The elms are planted in an eight degree angle, as if they were formed by the onshore wind. It refers to the leaning trees that can be found in the surrounding landscape of Den Helder.

client
Zeestad CV/BV
partners
Proper-Stok Ontwikkelaars, Synchroon, Woningstichting Den Helder
consultants
BBN, Geurst & Schulze architecten, Tony Fretton Architects,
team
Edzo Bindels, Joris Weijts, Felix Lauffer, Jasna Stefanovska, Marco van der Pluym, Perry Maas, Peter Vredeveld, Yichun He