The German defences cut right across the city. Information panels now stand at notable points along the route of the Atlantic Wall, from Madurodam to the Bomen- en Bloemenbuurt neighbourhood. They tell the story of how entire streets were demolished, of how residents were evacuated, of the anti-tank ditch and wall, and also of the post-war reconstruction. On this website you may find additional information. Discover how the Atlantic Wall changed The Hague forever.

 

New residential districts along Haagse Beek
The population of The Hague expanded rapidly in the first few decades of the twentieth century, particularly with the arrival of colonials and affluent new residents from elsewhere. The city soon extended as far as the fishing village of Scheveningen, and along the Haagse Beek creek, encroaching on Kijkduin. It was mainly the middle classes and well-to-do who came to live in these new neighbourhoods on a former sand ridge.

 

Haagse Beek transformed into anti-tank ditch
The new neighbourhoods were hit hardest by the construction of the Atlantic Wall. The Haagse Beek became part of an anti-tank ditch many metres wide, with a field of fire towards the city centre. Entire streets were wiped off the map. Others were evacuated and declared forbidden territory.

 

Big plans for reconstruction
The Hague commissioned architect W.M. Dudok to draw up a plan for the reconstruction. He envisioned a wide arterial road along the route of the anti-tank ditch, a restored Haagse Beek lined with planting and a major new cultural complex. It took many years to implement his plans, during which time the discrepancies between what Dudok had designed and what was actually built grew.

 

Download a description of the route

Start at Madurodam (4 MB)

Start at Goudsbloemlaan (4 MB)

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