On Thursday, the Afsluitdijk Wadden Center held an official opening ceremony. Kornwerderzand, a settlement located on the Afsluitdijk, is now home to a museum with interactive displays on the history of the 32-kilometre-long causeway which opened in 1932.
According to the Bolswards Nieuwsblad, Dutch Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management Cora van Nieuwenhuizen and Frisian alderman Klaas Kielstra, who serves as chairperson of the De Nieuwe Afsluitdijk association, attended the ribbon cutting ceremony. The opening of the center coincides with Leeuwarden-Friesland Capital of Culture 2018 and also marks the 100th anniversary of the Zuiderzeewet, the legal framework that made the creation of the Afsluitdijk possible.
Omrop Fryslân reports that the center will feature information about the Wadden region, the Ijsselmeer, the history of the causeway itself and the future of the Afsluitdijk, including plans to open up part of the causeway for fish to migrate through the waters.
The Afsluitdijk is a popular tourist destination: the Leeuwarder Courant reports that 200,000 foreign visitors travel to the site annually. The Center is part of a 1.2 billion euro plan to improve the Afsluitdijk’s infrastructure and make the area more attractive to tourists as a recreational destination.
Opening weekend festivities will await the center’s first visitors on 24 and 25th March. Tickets are free and can be reserved online at afsluitdijkwaddencenter.nl.
Photo source: Timo Jepkema, Omrop Fryslân