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Chapter 10: The Oer-IJ: A metropolitan wetland on Amsterdam’s doorstep: The archaeological-historical landscape as inspiration for spatial planning

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Chapter Summary

The Oer-IJ region northwest of Amsterdam is a metropolitan wetland environment occupied by a highly dynamic society living in a typical and surprisingly rich Dutch landscape. The traveller arriving by land, air or water, receives a striking impression of a bustling city, contrasted by a pattern of polders, canals and windmills, dating back to the age of Rembrandt and beyond. This chapter explains the success of a national policy programme called Belvedere, because it unites groups in the society who lived apart until recently. Belvedere aims at the integration of historic values in spatial planning and the daily environment of people. The central concept is protection by development. This involves identifying past uses of the landscape as a source of inspiration for the development of current and future landscapes, as part of a long term transformation; and at the same time preserving distinctive characteristics.

Keywords: Amsterdam; Belvedere; Dutch landscape; metropolitan landscape; Oer-IJ region



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