The town of Huizen is located in a prominent area on the Gooimeer. With a long coastline and Het Gooi region as the hinterland, there was a lot of untapped potential to strengthen the relationship with the water. For that reason, the municipality asked us to create an integral vision for the entire length of its coastline. Following the approval of the vision, the first implementation followed. The Zomerkade “Summer Quay” was transformed into a surprising urban beach that is now finally connected to the urban environment.

Huizen, the Netherlands
2020 - 2022
Project area
2,5 ha
Municipality of Huizen
Photography credits
Melle van Dijk, Pierre Marchevet

One integrated vision

In the past decades, many separate plans have been made for the coastal zone of Huizen, but they all lacked a coherent framework to link them together. As a result, individual developments did not reach their full potential and the implementation of plans stagnated. To get out of this impasse, we were asked to shape an integral vision using a participatory design process.

Wishes and attention points were collected and discussed in an extensive participation process which led to several key components of the vision; strengthening the connection between the historical town and the harbour, strengthening the green character of the coastline in general and concentrating new amenities and attractions to a limited number of hotspots linked to existing amenities.


From vision to reality

After receiving council approval for the coastal vision, we were asked to put the vision to practice for the Zomerkade (Summer Quay). This is an area located outside the village centre however, due to its beach typology, unique for the naturally rich Het Gooi region, it had substantial untapped potential to become attractive to a wider target group than it has previously served. For these reasons Zomerkade (Summer Quay) made the logical candidate as the first area to be tackled based on the vision.


We transformed the Zomerkade from a fragmented and inaccessible beach with a typical ’80s Dutch residential atmosphere, including carpark right on the beach, into a vibrant accessible and green waterfront. By removing the hard quay wall and unnecessary protrusions, the impressive crescent-shaped beach is brought to prominence. A clear and intuitive zoning defines areas for families, swimming and beach sports, all linked together by a new beach promenade and accessible from the quay by steps and slopes.

The design not only improves the beach itself, but also brings the atmosphere of the beach onto the quay, allowing for existing and new restaurants to best make use of their unique location and views.

Creator of meaningful places

Swimming at Zomerkade

Due to the character of the lake floor, which gently slopes to a water depth of about a meter at most, actual swimming was never possible at the Zomerkade. Our design includes the creation of a designated swimming area; a marked portion of the lake which has been deepened and protected against siltation. A long pier connects the swimming area to the beach promenade, where a new lifeguard station, shower facilities, a kiosk and food trucks are located. In addition, the new pier provides a mooring spot for SUPs, kayaks and other small vessels.

Green steps

The beach is made accessible through broad stairs and gentle ramps. The upper levels of the green steps host a meadow of colourful flowers, while the lower steped lawns provide seating and sunbathing spots. Along the bottom of the green stairs, the continuous beach promenade connects all recreational elements seamlessly.

Creator of meaningful places

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