|Defence Line of Amsterdam*|
|UNESCO World Heritage Site|
|Criteria||ii, iv, v|
|Region†||Europe and North America|
|Inscription||1996 (20th Session)|
|* Name as inscribed on World Heritage List.|
† Region as classified by UNESCO.
The UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the Defense line of Amsterdam (in Dutch named Stelling van Amsterdam) is a 135 km long ring of fortifications around Amsterdam, consisting of 42 forts located between 10 to 15 kilometers the centre, and lowlands that can easily be flooded in time of war. A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a site (such as a Forest, Mountain, Lake, Desert, Monument, Building, complex As of 2008 there are a total of 878 World Heritage Sites located in 145 "State Parties" The Netherlands ( Dutch:, ˈnedərlɑnt is the European part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, which consists of the Netherlands the Netherlands A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a site (such as a Forest, Mountain, Lake, Desert, Monument, Building, complex This is a list of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Europe. Asia Minor, Cyprus, all of the Aegean Islands, the Canaries A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a site (such as a Forest, Mountain, Lake, Desert, Monument, Building, complex United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization ( UNESCO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations established on November 16 A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a site (such as a Forest, Mountain, Lake, Desert, Monument, Building, complex Dutch ( is a West Germanic language spoken by around 24 million people 22 million of which are from the Netherlands, Belgium and Suriname Fortifications are Military Constructions and Buildings designed for defense in Warfare Humans have constructed defensive works for Amsterdam (pronounced) is the capital and largest city of the Netherlands, located in the province of North Holland in the west The flooding was designed to give a depth of about 30 cm, insufficient for boats to traverse. Any buildings within 1 km of the line had to be made of wood, so that they could be burnt and the obstruction removed.
The Stelling van Amsterdam was constructed between 1880 and 1920. The invention of the aeroplane and tank made the forts obsolete almost as soon as they were finished. Overview Fixed-wing aircraft range from small training and recreational aircraft to Wide-body aircraft and military cargo aircraft. A tank is a tracked, Armoured fighting vehicle designed for Front-line combat which combines Operational mobility and tactical Many of the forts now are under the control of the town councils and the nature department, and may be visited. Monuments Day, on the second Saturday in September, is the ideal day to visit as entrance is free.
The Stelling van Amsterdam was primarily a defensive "water line" (in Dutch: waterlinie). In the event of an enemy attack, large tracks of land around Amsterdam would be inundated with water, preventing the enemy from advancing. Amsterdam would function as a national reduit, as the last stronghold of the Netherlands. The Netherlands ( Dutch:, ˈnedərlɑnt is the European part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, which consists of the Netherlands the Netherlands Forts were built where roads, railways, or dikes crossed through the water line. At such locations there would be no water to stop the enemy, and therefore the forts were intended to shell the enemy.
The law for the construction of the Stelling van Amsterdam was passed in 1874. Year 1874 ( MDCCCLXXIV) was a Common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or a Common During the preparations prior to construction, it became apparent that the design was already outdated by modern technical advances. The invention of the brisance grenade (which would explode on impact of the target) necessitated the change from masonry to concrete forts. Brisance is a measure of the rapidity with which an Explosive develops its maximum Pressure. Masonry is the building of structures from individual units laid in and bound together by mortar, and the term "masonry" can also refer to the units themselves Concrete is a construction material composed of Cement (commonly Portland cement) as well as other cementitious materials such as Fly ash and Slag But the Dutch did not have the required experience yet using and building with concrete. Therefore extensive tests had to be performed where concrete structures were shelled with the heaviest artillery available at that time. Further delays resulted from the fact that the sand foundations had to settle for several years before the forts could be built on them. Not until 1897 could the actual construction finally begin.
The Stelling van Amsterdam has never seen combat service and the use of aircraft rendered it obsolete after World War I. It was however maintained and kept in service until decommissioned in 1963.
The dike through the Haarlemmermeer, which made it possible to flood the southern portion of the polder while the northern portion could continue to produce food for Amsterdam, is now cut by the A4 Motorway. Haarlemmermeer is a municipality in the Netherlands, in the province of North Holland. A polder is a low-lying tract of land enclosed by embankments known as dikes, that forms an artificial hydrological entity meaning it has no connection with The A4 motorway is a Motorway in the Netherlands from Amsterdam to the Belgian border near Zandvliet. This motorway also goes under the Ringvaart at Roelofarendsveen, making flooding of the Haarlemmermeer Polder and future use of the Stelling no longer possible. The Ringvaart (known in full as Ringvaart of the Haarlemmermeer Polder) is a canal in the province of North Holland, the Netherlands Roelofarendsveen ( is a town in the Dutch province of South Holland.
In 1996 the complete Stelling van Amsterdam was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.