Frame III   The land is organized

The organization of the Noordoostpolder has been the subject of many studies, both before and during the years of draining and construction. Every ditch and road was carefully mapped out and nothing was left to chance. Functionalism was the motive of many studies and plans.


This is also the case for the allotment. Square plots of land can be found throughout all the Dutch polders, but never as well executed and maintained as in the IJsselmeerpolders. It has created a truly unique landscape that, up to this day, has no equal.

The Model of Christaller

The settlements weren’t created haphazardly, they were placed according to the Christaller model: a core city in the middle with a ring of smaller core villages around it that formed the surrounding countryside. That model was used for the first time in the Noordoostpolder, and consistently. In the Wieringermeer, the towns are still at a more or less equal distance from each other and because of that, the capital city of Wieringerwerf couldn’t distinguish itself from the hardly smaller town of Middenmeer. During the development of the polders of Flevoland, the idea of the smaller towns was quickly obsolete though. Because of increased mobility due to mopeds and later by cars, the inhabitants of the smaller villages could easily reach the big city.

Click on the picture for an animation of Christaller’s central towns theory. Christaller tried to explain the development and distribution of cities with regard to each other by searching for rules that determine the amount, size and spatial distribution of these cities, 2007.


Just like the borders of the plots of land, the roads were laid down straight. Even in the man-made forests, planted on land uneconomic for agriculture, trees were planted in straight rows. Vegetation was planted along farmyards, roadsides and local forests to help reduce the austere and windy environment.

The last few years, natural processes have been allowed to take place around Schokland and in the east of the Noordoostpolder. The large forests there have lost their use to the commercial wood industry and have been converted (and expanded) for use as areas of natural beauty.


Film: Noordoostpolder from the air