Belvederes Drentsche Aa

Strootman Landscape Architects: In the landscape plan Drentsche Aa, we designed in 2004, we have proposed the designing of new belvederes in the Aa River area in Drenthe. On the basis of the contour map we have selected almost 30 locations and surveyed them in the field in more detail. A house style has been designed for all the new locations: furnishings, signboards, parking facilities and brand marks. A definite design has been made for 8 locations. The design interventions mainly consist of the removal of shrubs and trees to create views in combination with the creating of a special place where one can enjoy the view. Implementation commenced at the end of 2008.

Cultural history

In the Aa River area in Drenthe, belvederes have been present since the 19th century. The most famous one, which has also been captured in paintings, is the Kymmelsberg. The new belvederes provide an opportunity to enjoy the culture-historical and natural qualities of the Aa River area in Drenthe at some of the most spectacular places. At the Looner Esch the new belvedere will provide a view between the megalith and a small peatbog situated further along, which have an important historical relationship.


The belvederes will be fitted-out with specially designed furnishings, dependent on the situation. A sculptural seat has been designed for two locations. For the furnishings, use has been made of indigenous and untreated materials, like Larchwood and rusty, rugged-looking, perforated Cor-Ten steel.


In general, the belvederes have been designed with reserve, making use of natural means: soil, plants and objects of untreated wood and rusty Cor-Ten steel. The belvederes provide a view of the beautiful nature in the Aa River valley of Drenthe.

Regional design

On the basis of a detailed contour map and a vast amount of knowledge of the landscape of the Aa River area of Drenthe, the most special places over the entire river basin (30,000 hectares) have been sought. These places depict the special qualities of this National Landscape in a very special way.


In the north of the Aa River basin, where all sub catchments are merged into a mainstream, an important roadway crosses the stream, but you hardly notice that at all. Here a ëcar belvedereí has been designed, which ensures that road users have an overwhelming view across the river valley. Itís for that purpose that a considerable amount of shrubs and trees have been removed from the valley. The crossing of the stream thus becomes a prominent spot in the route.

Landscape Architecture: Strootman Landscape Architects
Project description: Outdoor furniture & signage
Client: Staatsbosbeheer
Location: Drenthe, Netherlands
Construction: 2008 – 2010
Project Volume: Ä 200.000,=
Size, hectares: 30.000 hectares
Process time: 2007 – 2008
Text: Strootman
Photos: Strootman, Harry Cock

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