This week I wanted to post a few pictures I have taken around Nijmegen’s river expansion. As you may know, if it wasn’t for the efforts of the resourceful Dutch engineers, most of the country would by now have disappeared below the unforgiving waters of the North sea. Nijmegen is located to the east of the country, bordering Germany, and is slightly more elevated than other cities (we live above sea level!). However, in the last years the amount of water the river carries has increased, and a strategy to lower the water and avoid floods was needed. In fact, during one of my first winters here the promenade got flooded, although only by a few centimeters.
This is the goal of the project “Ruimte voor de Waal” (“Room for the Waal” -the Waal being the river). Below you can see a picture I extracted from their website, showing the final project. Basically, they opened a new avenue for the water (to the left), built a brand new bridge for cars and pedestrians (the first, starting at the bottom of the image) and created a promenade on the newly-opened area, following the ending of the second bridge you see.
I had a walk there a few weeks ago with my family, on the occasion of their visit to Nijmegen, and took a few pictures that I wanted to share with you. The Dutch are famous for red bricks, irregular constructions and dangerous staircases. But in recent years, the Dutch have embraced awesome new architectural standards, perhaps as a rejection of the homogeneous concrete blocks used in the reconstruction of cities after WWII. The new architecture is modern, clean, not afraid to combine textures and innovative shapes. Although I’m the quirky kind of girl, I love the sight of cities integrating modern architecture and green areas, with the traditional old! So, Go Nijmegen!