Iconic Dutch structures

Learn more about our iconic Dutch structures and why they are celebrated and inspire similar advancements across the globe.


The Afsluitdijk is a 32 km long dyke that separates the Wadden Sea from the IJsselmeer in the Netherlands. Built largely by hand and completed in 1932, it is one of this country’s engineering highlights. The Afsluitdijk has been protecting the Netherlands from the sea for 90 years now.

Eastern Scheldt Barrier

The Eastern Scheldt Barrier is the crown jewel of the Delta Works. This imposing, 9-kilometre structure seals off the Oosterschelde whenever there is a threat of flooding.

Maeslant Barrier

The Maeslant Barrier is a marvel of engineering and a testament to the Netherlands’ commitment to flood protection. No other flood barrier in the world has larger moving parts than the Maeslant Barrier.

Room for the River

The Netherlands is under constant threat from flooding. Indeed, this threat is on the rise as the flood plains of rivers continue to shrink. What’s more, water levels are rising due to more frequent and heavier rainfall.

Houtribdijk reinforcement

The Houtribdijk reinforcement project was a world first in combining water safety with opportunities for nature and recreation. The project has created a dyke that is able to withstand storms that occur once every 10,000 years, while also providing a new home for wildlife and a space for people to enjoy the outdoors.

Marker Wadden

In an effort to improve water quality and create a new habitat for wildlife, a unique hydraulic engineering project has unfolded in the Markermeer: Marker Wadden. A new group of islands has been created, sculpted from sand, clay and silt from the Markermeer.