Zeestad and the municipality of Den Helder (Netherlands) announced MVRDV as winners in the competition for a new public installation on the northern dike of the city of Den Helder. The jury praised the winning entry for demonstrating “an energetic spirit of the city is represented as an infinite form.” The new landmark represents the connection between city and sea. Completion is set for 2019.
The city’s unique location and heritage have made it a viewing point for the Marsdiep, North and Wadden Sea. MVRDV were selected as winners to create a new symbol for the city to help it develop a sense of identity, and establish a renewed connection between the city and the sea which became more disconnected after a recent reinforcement of the dike. The design responds to the current lack of a distinguishable symbol for Den Helder.
A town with a remarkable flood defence system, a dike running from the dunes to the harbour blocks sea views. SeaSaw makes a new connection between land and water by creating a viewing platform on the dike, and by the sea. In this way, a relationship between Den Helder and the sea is formed. This new installation signals the start of renewal and rediscovery of the dike and its surroundings with a new landmark that matches the identity of Den Helder: tough and energetic.
In addition to the design of SeaSaw, a scenic 5-km walking, cycling and hiking route is introduced across the dike to connect it better to both the city and sea. Activating the seafront, this weaving pathway invites visitors and resident to climb the dike and take a look at the other side. At the junction of these routes, SeaSaw is added in the form of an infinite loop that serves as a viewing platform towards the city and sea. Source by MVRDV.
- Location: Den Helder, The Netherlands
- Architect: MVRDV
- Principal: Winy Maas, Jacob Van Rijs and Nathalie De Vries
- Project Team: Jacob van Rijs, Stefan de Koning with Ronald Hoogeveen, Sanne van der Burgh, Geert Folmer, Stavros Gargaretas, Boudewijn Thomas, Mariya Gyaurova, Akshey Krishna Venkatesh, Afrodite Moustroufis, Angel Sanchez Navarro, Boris Tikvarski, Edina Peli, Kristin Schaefer, Katarzyna Nowak, Kevin Loftus, Luca Vacchini, Mirco Facchinelli and Meng Yang
- Visualisation: Antonio Luca Coco, Tomaso Maschietti, Giovanni Coni and Kirill Emelianov
- Partners: IMd Consulting engineers: ir. Pim Peters RO and ir. Sander Lamping
- Client: Zeestad and the municipality of Den Helder
- Budget: Undisclosed
- Year: 2018+
- Images: Courtesy of MVRDV
Article by Marco Rinaldi