The Balkland Park in Harlingen

A place for sports, play, rest and nature

We have co-designed with René Kuiken / Urbanism an attractive zone to the south of Harlingen: Het Westerzeedijkgebied. It forms a link between the city and the countryside, with a range of recreational possibilities for residents, entrepreneurs and tourists. The Balkland Park is the first part that is currently being implemented. This former sports ground is being transformed into a beautiful location for young and old. The paths and the first play areas are already in place, and the trees and flowering plants will be planted and sown this autumn. The park is growing!


Westerzeedijk, Harlingen


Gemeente Harlingen


René Kuiken Urbanism

Surface Area

8,1 ha

Design Year



2022 -

For young children there will be natural and adventurous opportunities for play: climbing and clambering frames and play opportunities with water. There is plenty of place to play sports or to just relax and lie in the grass, but there are also attractive routes for a stroll and quiet spots with benches.

The Balkland Park is a former refuse tip, which imposed limitations on digging in the area. In the design we have turned this disadvantage into an advantage. Grassy hills have been created in the landscape with available good land from the surroundings. These grassy hills afford not only good growing conditions for new plants, but also visual variation. Dense vegetation alternating with open areas make the area seem larger.

The varied planting with trees and bushes – many of them species that are popular with birds and insects such as cherry, maple and hawthorn – also contributes to the biodiversity. The area that was previously dominated by fences has now been given a friendly and inviting character thanks to the use of natural partitions. Although the existing vegetation has been retained as much as possible, it will still take some time before the park is really mature. All the same, thanks to the much improved connection with its surroundings, the users have already managed to find it. The deliberately wide paths are filled with the bustle of cyclists, skaters, ramblers and joggers.

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