Minister Melanie Schultz van Haegen waves the Sandships goodbye at the Hondsbossche-en Pettemer Zeewering

Just over a year ago, on the 3rd of March 2014, the largest coastal sand replenishment (for safety) began in the Netherlands. Over the past year 35 million cubic meters of sand, intended to fortify the Hondsbossche-en Pettemer Zeewering (sea wall) have been deposited along 10 km of coastline north of Petten to just south of Camperduin.

Now all the sand has been delivered, the profiling of the dune landscape above the water line will continue. This project milestone was celebrated by the Dutch Minister of Infrastructure and the Environment, Melanie Schultz van Haegen and a selected company of officials on Monday the 16th of March with an official tour around the new dunescape.

West 8 cooperated with Boskalis and van Oord on the integral design of the new dune landscape. Combining engineering with ecology and recreation, the design for Hondsbossche-en Pettemer Zeewering opts for a sandy and dynamic solution instead of fixed or hardscape approach. It incorporates special features like a lagoon, a natural valley and a panorama dune. Devoid of fixed programming, the landscape is designed to develop and evolve over time.

The new landscape (which has a volume equivalent to 400 football fields) will connect the Schoorl-and Pettemer dunes. Creating one of the longest uninterrupted dunescapes in the Netherlands and providing a line of defense for the 2.7 million residents who live along this stretch of North Holland coastline.

Watch the gradual transformation of the coastline, as seen by a drone here