Noordwijk was built on old dunes, on the innermost sand ridge of the Dutch coast. Its main street, the Voorstraat, is the old thoroughfare on this sand ridge, along which, besides the town centre, several major country manors and estates are located, such as Offem and Calorama.
Soon you will be able to walk straight from the Voorstraat into the new town district of Offem-Zuid. The lay-out of this new residential area, in the shadow of the leafy Offem estate, is grafted onto existing landscape structures, with a small-town atmosphere befitting Noordwijk’s history.
The pattern of sand ridge and flood plain strongly determines Noordwijk’s lay-out. The sandy elevations of the ridge – old dunes that eroded and sank into the landscape – were settled first. Eventually, the country estates were realised here as well. Lower down on the sand ridge, in the transition to Noordwijk’s only flood plain, farmhouses were situated.
On the same slope, flowing from sandy ridge to peaty flood plain, Offem Zuid was planned. From higher up the ridge down to the flood plain, this residential area offers three distinct atmospheres: the stately, leafy manor atmosphere, the small-town atmosphere, and the atmosphere of the farmyard.
– Mathy van Schie, Project leader Offem Zuid, municipality of Noordwijk
The main street of the new residential area will be the extended Voorstraat, a posh street that is the main connector to the town centre for slow traffic. The authentic look of the Voorstraat, with a variety of stately town houses, is extended into the project area. The Voorstraat is the string tying together pearls: highlights along the street. These ‘Little Pearls of the Voorstraat’ come in different shapes and sizes: cobbled squares, green courtyards, a village green and greenbelts. After crossing the Achterweg (the traditionally lower, secondary road), the atmosphere changes. Here, the new Voorstraat opens up towards the ‘farmyard’ and the open landscape.
At right angles from the extended Voorstraat and the Offem estate, the different neighbourhoods are bookended by greenbelts.
On the sand ridge, these greenbelts are straight and stately; in the plain they are broad and rough. The neighbourhoods copy this pattern.
The intimate, verdant character of the adjacent Offem estate has been integrated into the estate zone. Here, stately lanes and stylish houses on large parcels set the tone.
The small-town character south of the Voorstraat has a historical look with a contemporary twist, and references the uniqueness of Noordwijk’s town centre. Its housing volumes are modest, and because of the individuality of each house, its atmosphere matches the rest of the town.
With its green entryways, Noordwijk is different from other regional towns along the motorway N206. At Offem Zuid, visitors get a first taste of the town: spacious, green, cohesive, intimate and respectful to its landscape and history.
To be able to experience this fully, distance is needed between buildings and the main roads. Key factor is: the higher the speed, the more distance is needed. By adjusting these distances in such a way that they conform to legal noise zones and the zoning of fine particles, a win-win situation is created. Pleasant and sustainable living conditions, no sound barriers and an attractive green entryway!
Title: Offem Zuid
Location: Noordwijk, NL
Size: 30 ha
Client: Municipality of Noordwijk, project team Offem Zuid
Cooperation: Municipality of Noordwijk, Bpd, Campri, Didvastgoed, Elberfeld
Type: Urban plan, Visual quality plan (phase 1), Design plan
Image credits: BoschSlabbers, Theo van Leur
Project code: HS 15-04