By Annisa Cahyani Putri
The Netherlands is known with its contented people. They look so really happy because they have many things that could fulfill their wants. Dutch expertises in creating island and reclamation are not something to be belittled. Those are proved in some projects have been implemented in Netherlands and abroad that could give good results. As basic information, an artificial island is an island that has been constructed by people purposely. In modern era, artificial islands are usually formed by land reclamation, but some are formed by the incidental isolation of an existing piece of land during canal construction or flooding of valleys resulting in the tops of former knolls which getting isolated by water.
The Delta Lowlands is one of the most densely populated regions in the world. The Delta metropolis is becoming less and less popular because of the steady disappearance of the open countryside and because of the rising sea level that directly threatens low-lying land. Randstad and the Flemish Diamond offer new land in the form of a series of artificial islands off the coast of Flanders, Zeeland, and Holland. These dune islands, with the total surface area of more than 150,000 hectares, will break the waves that are rising in front of the vulnerable coast. Engineering channels will improve the offshore undercurrent so that the sea level drops when a storm blows from the northwest.
The main island of the Happy Islands named Hollandsoog, 150,000-200,000 hectares, will be shaped like Terschelling, a happy island for families, lonely hearts, poets, and festivals. Hollandsoog could develop an economy based on leisure activities and the enjoyment of nature. City folk short of space and relaxation could have an inexpensive home in the country. A dacha for every family ! Reliable ferry services will take people from cities to seaside in the weekends and school holidays. Protected from the worst of the sea, the old mainland will remain the place for daily traffic, school, and work.
A new delta will be developed off the coast of Zeeland with smaller islands, tidal channels and salt marshes. The northernmost island of this offshore delta will be Nieuw Voorne, a place for isolated nature high-risk industry and harbor functions as well as energy such as nuclear power stations and liquid gas terminal elongated The central island, opposite the Oosterschelde, is intended as an island for nature and a water-front town.
The happy island will house a continuous windmill park to make the island self-sufficient in energy as well as generating twenty percent of the energy requirements of the mainland. The creation of deep troughs for sand excavation will mean the restoration of resting and breeding ground for fish in this special habitat. A larger diversity of species will be able to develop, to the benefit of the fishery sector. By combining and harmonizing a variety of interests the islands will be a sustainable gift to future generations. The happy islands are a fascinating addition to the rich Dutch tradition of making land.
Bouman, Ole. 2009. Architecture of Consequence. NAi Publishers, Rotterdam.