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Doorkijkpaneel 6. Larsen

Ten villages would be built in Eastern Flevoland. One by one the villages disappeared from the plans. Larsen is the last village to disappear.

NEVER HUNGRY AGAIN
The IJsselmeer polders were originally intended as an agricultural area. An important goal of the Zuiderzee project was to prevent the Netherlands from experiencing food shortages or famine again, as occurred during the Second World War. By developing large arable and horticultural areas, with countless farms and villages, the Netherlands would become more self-sufficient.

WITHIN CYCLING DISTANCE
The design of the first IJsselmeer polders was tailored to their agricultural function. In the Noordoostpolder, which dried up in 1942, one medium-sized residential area was built; that is Emmeloord. Around this central core are ten smaller villages; Marknesse, Tollebeek, Rutten, Bant, Nagele, Luttelgeest, Creil, Urk, Espel and Kraggenburg. These all have their own facilities. The underlying idea at the time was that the polder residents would mainly travel by bicycle. Each farm therefore had to be within cycling distance of a village, so that people could easily use the village's facilities.

NEW INSIGHTS
In the early 1950s, there were plans to organize Eastern Flevoland in the same way as the Noordoostpolder: one central residential area, namely Dronten, with ten villages surrounding it. However, over the course of the 1950s, car ownership increased sharply and residents became increasingly mobile. Moreover, due to the mechanization of agriculture, the number of agricultural workers decreased. It was no longer necessary to design and build facilities within cycling distance of the farms. Of the planned villages around Dronten, only Swifterbant and Biddinghuizen were ultimately built.

THOUGHT OF EVERYTHING
The last village to disappear from the map was Larsen. This happened at the last minute. The urban planner and professor Niek de Boer (1924-2016) completed his design for the village of Larsen in October 1964. The village should rise southwest of Dronten.

SERVICES
You are now looking towards the village. This is what the village might have looked like. A village with 640 homes for approximately 2300 people. Everything had been thought of, three school buildings, 10 to 15 shops, a medical center, a library, a nurse's residence, a freezer house and a postal agency. Three large churches were planned and - as written in De Boer's village plan - 'perhaps a few more small churches...' 

NEVER BUILT
Sand was even sprayed on the site where Larsen would be built. At the beginning of 1965, the National Office for the IJsselmeerpolders decided to cancel Larsen. Between 1956 and 1959, Larsen was located at various locations on the map of Flevoland. Initially it would be located between Lelystad and Swifterbant. Later the location in the current Larserbos seemed most likely. A little further from where you are now, a sand depot has been created, which is now known as the Hedgerow Landscape of the Het Flevo landscape foundation. This may have been the intended starting location for the development of Larsen. 


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