Houtribdijk reinforcement

Houtribdijk reinforcement

The Houtribdijk no longer meets the safety norm laid down in the Water Act. In response, Rijkswaterstaat is reinforcing this dyke between Lelystad and Enkhuizen with sand and stone. After the reinforcement, the dyke is able to withstand a severe storm that, on average, occurs once every 10,000 years.

Worldwide first

Sandy reinforcement of a dyke in such a huge non-tidal inland water is a worldwide first. Consequently, a test area was created in advance. Specialists from the EcoShape knowledge consortium conducted extensive research there on how sand behaves. Henk Meuldijk, reinforcement project manager at Rijkswaterstaat: 'It's really good that measurements were taken at the pilot site for a number of years. We see that the shape of the sand mass is relatively stable after two years. We can use this knowledge for the construction of the reinforcement as well as for our management and maintenance plan.' Meuldijk hopes to deepen the knowledge gained about the reinforcement of the Houtribdijk. 'The knowledge that we gain here is very useful in the Netherlands and beyond.'


Completed: 2020
2017Work starts
December 2017Bicycle path closed
July/August 2018Bicycle path temporarily open
July 2019Bicycle path permanently open
2020Dyke reinforcement completed

Reinforcement Houtribdijk with sandy banks: a worldwide first

(On-screen title: Reinforcement of the Houtribdijk.) VOICE-OVER: A 25-kilometre-long dike has kept the Netherlands safe for over fifty years. This is the Houtribdijk, also known as the Markerwaarddijk. Scenically located, it forms a dam between the IJsselmeer and the Markermeer. To keep the provinces in the IJsselmeer region safe, we're reinforcing the Houtribdijk. That's not all, our focus is also on nature and recreation. (Boats sail on the water. One arrow points to Enkhuizen, and another arrow, to Lelystad. Near the part of the dike that's near Enkhuizen, the following text appears: 'Reinforced with sandy banks'. In the middle, it says, '270 hectares of new nature', and near Lelystad, 'Reinforced with quarry stones.') TRANQUIL MUSIC Near Lelystad, the dike is reinforced with quarry stones. At the Enkhuizen end, the dike will have broad, sandy banks. These will break the waves in the future. This reinforcement approach in such a huge non-tidal, inland body of water is a worldwide first. We're also seizing opportunities for nature development and recreation. A water sports beach near Lelystad will accommodate kite surfers and wind surfers. Rijkswaterstaat is also improving the water quality. Halfway along the dike, on the Markermeer side, we're developing new nature, where fish, insects and shellfish like to live. This, in turn, attracts birds. (Waves crash against the side of the dike. Dark birds perch upon rocks in the water. White birds fly away.) THE TRANQUIL MUSIC CONTINUES Innovative dike reinforcement and attention to nature give this beautiful area abundant opportunities to develop. And help keep the Netherlands safe. (The Dutch coat of arms, next to: Rijkswaterstaat. Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management. The screen turns yellow and white. On-screen text: More information? Visit rijkswaterstaat.nl/houtribdijk/english. A production of Rijkswaterstaat. Copyright 2018.)