ORAM director Kees Noorman donates Port medal to new salt dam

You must have a big heart for the port if you donate your hard-earned Port Medal to the construction that will soon extract salt that flows into the North Sea Canal via IJmuiden Sea Lock. Kees Noorman calls the immortalization in concrete of the award he received in 2022 "particularly honorable.


Fltr. Kees Noorman, Cor Oudendijk and Annemarie Haasjes (ORAM). Photo: Ko van Leeuwen

Van Hattum & Blankevoort, commissioned by Rijkswaterstaat to build the project, witnessed the moment. As did former harbor master of Amsterdam Cor Oudendijk, who in 2017 donated his port medal to the concrete of one of the door casings of Zeesluis IJmuiden. Winners of the Port Medal, which is awarded annually at the Amports Port Guild Dinner, have rendered exceptional service to the port of Amsterdam. When you have earned that status, it is also not so surprising to have the bronze gem immortalized on structures crucial to the port's survival.

"This structure will soon guarantee the functioning of the port even in drier periods," Noorman said. "I also see it as a result of the commitment shown by Rijkswaterstaat to keep the Amsterdam port functioning in optimal condition. In doing so, after Sea Lock IJmuiden, this project is yet another example of Dutch hydraulic engineering. A specialty that the rest of the world knows us for and what we need to propagate."

the port medal of kees noorman is thrown into the cement, only legs and arms of people are visible

There goes the Port token. At the head of the southern concrete pillar. Photo: Ko van Leeuwen

Norseman's Harbour token is as of today in the highest point of the southern concrete pillar of the salt dam. This is now still 27.5 meters above the ground, but after sinking it will only protrude one and a half meters above the water. The entire structure will be pre-built on land by Van Hattum & Blankevoort and put in place next year.


The southern pillar: Now 27.5m. above ground, soon to be 1.5m. above water. Photo: Ko van Leeuwen

Selective extraction
Client Rijkswaterstaat calls the salt dam in progress a kind of (saltwater) mailbox. Each time ships pass through, salt water flows into the North Sea Canal, which has harmful effects on nature, agriculture and process water. Selective abstraction should prevent the increase of salt water. Because salt water is heavier than fresh water, it flows back to the sea through an opening at the bottom of the structure. The fresh water is retained and remains in the North Sea Canal. Van Hattum & Blankevoort is building the construction in the Binnenspuikanaal of the lock complex in IJmuiden.