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Beach and dunes where possible; rock and concrete where required

Maasvlakte 2 will be situated some 5 m above New Amsterdam Water Level (NAP). Nevertheless, additional protection measures are required to avoid the risk of wet feet during extremely high water. That is why Maasvlakte 2 will lie behind a seawall that arms the new 11-km stretch of coastline against the heaviest storms.  The seawall will be executed in two variants. In the southwest, beaches and dunes will offer protection from the sea. This form of coastal defence bears the closest resemblance to the natural landscape as found along the entire Dutch coastline. On the northern edge of Maasvlakte 2, there is not enough room for this ‘soft seawall’. Here, the contractor will therefore build a hard seawall.

The typical hard seawall offers the same protection but needs a lot less space to do so. And that’s a basic requirement. After all, the seawall here borders directly on the Eurogeul, the main fairway leading from the sea to the Rotterdam port. The mammoth oil tankers and container ships use this approach channel to enter the port. And these vessels have a deep draught. A heavily inclined seawall is consequently a must.

Both seawalls will be protecting Maasvlakte 2 from the sea. From a heavy autumn gale to the most extreme storms that occur only once every 10,000 years. To ensure this, the seawall will be constructed as much as 14 m above NAP. Furthermore, an offshore block dam will break the waves in front of the hard seawall before they reach the stony dune behind.

Facts and figures

  • 3.5 km of hard seawall on the north-western rim.
  • 7.5 km of soft seawall on the western and southern edges.
  • No or limited effects on the Dutch coastline compared to the current situation in terms of tidal range, wave height and silt transport.
  • Safe and smooth access for ocean-going vessels via the Yangtzehaven.