On the corner of Ieplaan and Banaanstraat.

Prior to the Second World War, this was a residential area, built in the early 20th century to house members of the city’s middle-class population. The German occupation authorities ordered the complete demolition of everything between Sportlaan and Hanenburglaan. This cleared the way for the anti-tank ditch and open field of fire that was intended to protect the German military strongpoint at Scheveningen against land attack.

In the post-war reconstruction plans drawn up by city architect W.M. Dudok, a number of streets disappeared forever, making way for these public gardens, known as the Rode Kruisplantsoen. The Haagse Beek was rerouted and now forms the pond in the middle of the gardens. Segbroeklaan was also rerouted and turned into a broad, landscaped traffic artery modelled on an American ‘parkway’. Dudock saw the blocks of flats surrounding the public gardens as a rational solution to the post-war middle-class housing crisis. A number of apartment blocks were built parallel to the street. Others, like those designed by architect Piet Zanstra (1905-2003) on the other side of the gardens, are positioned diagonally to the road.

PictureRode Kruisplantsoen
Ieplaan before the war

Ieplaan before the war

Ieplaan at Houtrustbrug

Ieplaan at Houtrustbrug, c. 1935. The Hague City Archives


Ieplaan, c. 1925. The Hague City Archives

Olijfstraat, photographed from Ieplaan

Olijfstraat, photographed from Ieplaan, 1943. The Hague City Archives

Segbroeklaan, 1959

Segbroeklaan, 1959. The Hague City Archives


Appartment buildings desighed by P. Zanstra, 1956. The Hague City Archives