With the National Collection for Dutch Architecture and Urban Planning as a starting point, theatre and radio maker Naomi Steijger will discuss the construction and history of Rotterdam’s Museum Park with designer Petra Blaisse, curator Ellen Smit and local residents and park users. This is the third in the Green in the City podcast series.
Museum Park in Rotterdam is best known for its many museums, such as Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, the Kunsthal and the recently completed Boijmans Van Beuningen Depot designed by MVRDV. Much less know is the fact that Museum Park was once an extensive green enclave in the heart of the city. The area was called the Land of Hoboken, after its owners of the time. After the land was sold to the city council in 1924, it became a public city park, where differing views on the function of greenery in the city have left their mark. In the podcast we search for these ideas. Can they still be recognised and experienced? And what do current users of the Museum Park think?
Naomi Steijger talks with Ellen Smit, curator of Het Nieuwe Instituut and interior and landscape architect Petra Blaisse, among others. Blaisse worked on the 1991 design of Museum Park together with Rem Koolhaas (OMA) and the French landscape architect Yves Brunier (1962-1991).
The archives of Het Nieuwe Instituut contain various designs, photos and brochures relating to Museum Park. The accompanying essay on this page uses this historical material to explore the green identity of the area, as it has been shaped over time by ideas about country estates, urban walking routes, outdoor exhibitions and city parks.
Archive Explorations: Green in the City
During the lockdowns of the Covid-19 pandemic, we became more aware than ever of the relaxing and healing power of the greenery around us. Yet the idea that nature has a positive effect on our physical and mental health is not new: much of the planning of the greenery in the Netherlands is based on this idea. In the series Green in the City, part of Archive Explorations, various radio broadcasters go on a mission to find out more. How have garden and landscape architects and urban planners dealt with the concept of healthy greenery over the years? What were their views, and how do we see them now?
In the heart of Museum Park, a mirror reflects the Rotterdam cityscape. Depot Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen is more than just a cultural temple in Museum Park. It mesmerises passers-by with its distorted, provocative and hypnotic panorama of the surrounding skyline. Coincidentally, a century earlier, the leading figure in Rotterdam’s urban development, J.G. Witteveen, was also enamoured of Rotterdam’s cityscape. Gazing from the Land van Hoboken’s emptiness, he wanted his plan for this area to preserve the views of the surrounding city.
Het Nieuwe Instituut’s archives contain various designs, photographs and brochures about Museum Park, which stands on part of the former Land van Hoboken. Today, the public knows this urban park thanks to its adjacent museums: Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, the Chabot Museum, Kunsthal, the Natural History Museum, Het Nieuwe Instituut and Sonneveld House. With the completion of Depot Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, designed by MVRDV, the park and outdoor space are undergoing significant transformation.
Over time, ideas in Het Nieuwe Instituut’s archives about country estates, urban walking routes, outdoor exhibitions, and city parks have shaped the area’s green identity. In this essay, we ‘wander’ through these archives, looking for ideas about green spaces and how they have shaped Museum Park over time.
Land van Hoboken
Museum Park sits on part of the former Land van Hoboken, named after its owner, Anthony van Hoboken (1756–1850), who bought this 56-hectare area in the first half of the 19th century. The reason for his purchase is unknown. Perhaps this merchant shipowner intended to speculate on the land’s value. It is also likely that he, like many wealthy Rotterdammers, probably had an affinity to this rural part of Rotterdam and Delfshaven. An area outside the city with green surroundings, it featured the occasional farm with trees, and several roads leading to other cities.
At that time, well-to-do Rotterdammers built several country estates as summer residences with formal gardens and villas. There are large trees, fragrant herbs and flowers, and extensive gardens with teahouses and orangeries. The properties had idyllic names, such as Schoonoord (Beautiful Place), Welgelegen (Well Situated), Rozenlust (Rose Delight), Maaslust (Mass Delight), Rustplaets (Tranquil Place) and Lust en Rust (Joy and Peace). The well-heeled bourgeoisie also came here to stroll, paddle, and drink in one of the many taverns. On the land where the Euromast and Het Park now stand were private country estates. In 1850, this area, together with the Land van Hoboken, was more visually cohesive than today. There was no high river dike to contain the Maas, nor did the Westzeedijk exist in its current elevated form. With the Land van Hoboken, the various country estates on the Maas formed one large outlying area of Rotterdam and Delfshaven.
Anthony van Hoboken
Nowadays, we would consider business owner Anthony van Hoboken as a self-made man. Born in 1756 into a poor Rotterdam family, he went to work as a helper in a wine warehouse where, at an early age, he learnt the basics of trade and commerce. He decided to specialise in Rotterdam’s cheese and butter business and became a merchant and trader, and later a shipowner and shipbuilder. When he was almost 40, the VOC was dissolved, and he exploited the gap this created in the freight market by starting to ship to the former Dutch East Indies. For 50 years, from 1795, he exported cheese and butter to the former Dutch East Indies and brought herbs, spices and wild animals back to Rotterdam. He was also involved in founding the Dutch Trading Company (NHM, Nederlandse Handelmaatschappij) in 1824, which he significantly influenced and benefitted from commercially.
The Cultivation System and slavery
From 1830, Van Hoboken benefitted from the introduction of the controversial Cultivation System, which forced Java’s population to devote 20% of its agricultural land to grow coffee, sugar, indigo, tea, tobacco, pepper, cotton and cinnamon for the NHM, which bought these crops for a meagre price. The NHM then sold these products in the Netherlands at a vast mark-up, with the proceeds going to the Dutch treasury. Over the years, the Dutch government ordered the Indigenous population to give up an ever-increasing percentage of their harvest. The system’s income therefore rose from 200,000 guilders (approximately 90,000 euros) in 1832 to 20 million guilders (more than nine million euros) by the end of the 1930s, representing 30% of the Dutch state’s income.
Historical records show that Anthony van Hoboken, like several merchants from that period, partly made his fortune by trading ‘soldier boys’ (orphans) and enslaved Africans whom he transported to the Americas. Between 1831 and 1842, his company also shipped and traded 2,300 enslaved Africans to the East Indies, despite several countries having abolished slavery. He did this to suppress the Indigenous uprisings in the former Dutch East Indies around 1835. The Royal Dutch East Indies Army (KNIL) needed reinforcements to crush the rebellions. Attempts to recruit African volunteers for the KNIL failed. Local enslaved people were then conscripted under false pretences as freemen and volunteer soldiers, the vast majority of whom perished in the former colony.
Lord of Rhoon and Pendrecht and of Cortgene
By 1840, Anthony van Hoboken was the richest man in Rotterdam and, with 22 sailing ships, the Netherlands’ largest shipowner and sea trader. He had started purchasing land and country estates in Rotterdam around 1810, including two on the Schiekade and the Oostzeedijk. These estates, with gardens landscaped according to the latest fashion, boosted the owner’s status and offered the opportunity to relax in rustic and verdant surroundings. Eventually, he also purchased what became the Land van Hoboken – perhaps as a long-term investment and to increase his prestige. He also bought the lordships of Rhoon and Pendrecht and of Cortgene (Noord-Beveland). He was entitled to call himself lord of these areas and enjoy the accompanying privileges such as the right to fish, ferry and hunt. After his death, his sons Anthony, Jacobus and Willem van Hoboken continued operating the business, trading with the former Dutch East Indies, and were involved in the Land van Hoboken.
Villa van Hoboken
In the second half of the 19th century, Rotterdam’s economy boomed. The population increased, and the city expanded with residential areas and harbours to the south and west. This growth had significant consequences for the location of the Land van Hoboken. The sprawl of new buildings and streets increasingly encroached upon Rotterdam and Delfshaven’s leafy outskirts. Also, the Land van Hoboken’s first owner, Anthony van Hoboken, died in 1850, aged 94. During his lifetime, he left most of the property unused. In 1852, his son Jacobus van Hoboken commissioned Villa van Hoboken (now Villa Dijkzigt, home to Rotterdam’s Natural History Museum) and had the surroundings landscaped with gardens, footpaths and ponds.
Architect J.F. Metzelaar designed the country house next to the current Westzeedijk, and the family used it as a temporary residence. Pictures and descriptions from that time show a villa surrounded by countryside, with an overgrown loggia looking onto the garden and park and a tower reminiscent of a castle. There are trees and shrubs, a vegetable garden, ponds, and beautiful avenues with distant views over the surrounding meadows. Jacobus commissioned the same architect to build a farm on the Land van Hoboken ten years later. This farm, with a cowshed, stables for workhorses and carriage horses, a coach house, a farmer’s cottage and an enormous haystack, indicated the family’s possible ambitions to reap the rewards of the land’s usufruct. By the end of the 19th century, of the 56 hectares of land, four were used as estates and 51 as pasture.
It was not only the Land van Hoboken’s character that changed; its surroundings also changed. On the south side, where country estates bordered the Maas, a large public park was created following the City of Rotterdam’s purchase of two country estates. Between 1852 and 1863, landscape architects J.D. Zocher Jr. and his son L.P. Zocher designed and realised what was known at the time as a ‘public walk’ (publieke wandeling), which from 1853 was called Het Park and abutted the Land van Hoboken. In 1896, the river dike at Het Park was heightened considerably. This elevated pedestrian promenade, the current Parkkade, offered a view of Het Park and the Land van Hoboken. Nieuwe Binnenweg also offered an uninterrupted view across the Land van Hoboken to Het Park and de Heuvel, giving it a vast open quality. On the west side, the Land van Hoboken bordered Westersingel and thus connected with Blijdorp Zoo at its former location on Westersingel. On the east side, the Land adjoined Heemraadssingel. These singels (streets with a water channel) are part of city architect W.N. Rose’s water purification project. Besides purifying water from the Maas, the singels also have adjacent public footpaths to the east and west of the Land van Hoboken.
From private to public property
The Land van Hoboken remained a privately owned green oasis occupying a large tract of the urban environment until 1924, when the City of Rotterdam bought it for the then considerable sum of four million guilders (almost two million euros) from the land developer Van Dam. He, in turn, had bought the area from the Van Hoboken family in 1916. He was not the only interested party. Various stakeholders in Rotterdam, private individuals and the city council had long coveted this land, which was becoming increasingly attractive due to its central location in an ever-expanding city.
A Quartier Latin
Even before the city bought the estate, wealthy Rotterdam citizens were already announcing their plans for the Land van Hoboken. In 1919, under the leadership of entrepreneur K.P. van der Mandele, also chairman of the Chamber of Commerce and initiator of Vreewijk Garden Suburb (see podcast (in Dutch) Groen in de Stad #1: Vreewijk), they established the New Rotterdam Association for Urban Improvement (Vereniging voor Stadsverbetering ‘Nieuw Rotterdam’). Among other things, they advocated preserving cultural facilities and urban green spaces so that Rotterdam would remain an attractive residential location for wealthier citizens. The old city between Coolsingel, Goudsesingel and the Maas offered little scope for this because the ports and the transhipment of goods were dominant, along with accompanying leisure amenities that befit a port city: harbour hotels, pubs, eateries and variety theatres. In their view, the Land van Hoboken had the potential to become a Quartier Latin as in Paris: a chic cultural district with museums in a green urban park for affluent Rotterdammers. It would be a pleasant area to stroll, connected to Rotterdam’s other parks, such as Het Park, the Promenade along the Maas, Westersingel and Heemraadsingel.
Assessing the Land van Hoboken
The Land van Hoboken’s emptiness also sparked the imagination of the municipal offices. In the 19th century, city architect W.N. Rose already proposed in vain to transform this area into a luxury residential neighbourhood. However, once ownership of the land is acquired in 1924, the City of Rotterdam was free to exploit the Land van Hoboken. After the sale, the area’s name changed to Dykzigt at the request of the Van Hoboken family.
Immediately after the land’s purchase, a city committee assigned architects P. Verhagen, A. Siebers, J.A. Brinkman & L.C. van der Vlugt and J.C. Meischke to collaborate on a design for the former Land van Hoboken and present it to the Mayor and Aldermen. However, they each made a separate plan, parts of which ended up in the Dykzicht Expansion Plan, which J.G. Witteveen, head of Urban Development in Rotterdam, published in 1927 and the implementation of which began in 1928.
Dykzigt Expansion Plan
Witteveen’s Dykzigt Expansion Plan interprets the Land van Hoboken at that time by setting out its charm and qualities, stating how he would use these to preserve Rotterdam’s quality of life for the future. He promoted the area’s space, silence, peace and light – qualities of considerable value in ever-expanding Rotterdam. The site should therefore remain untouched wherever possible. As an urban planner, he recognised this open area’s important position: centrally located and close to Het Park and the Promenade along the Maas. He realised that public green spaces were a scarce commodity due to Rotterdam’s lack of parks. He also acknowledged that it is somewhat detached in character. The area is poorly accessible: Rotterdammers cycled or walked along the open meadows on Nieuwe Binnenweg, but the Dykzigt estate on Westzeedijk was not publicly accessible, and there were no footpaths in the area. Its lack of human scale, vibrancy and social contact rendered the area an isolated part of the city rather than a public walking area. As well as looking from the outside in, Witteveen also looked from the inside out. He admired the view from the open land onto Rotterdam’s various towers and church spires. It offered a metropolitan experience, like the Bois de Boulogne in Paris. From the park’s silence, peace and space, the walker connected to a world centre. One experiences the metropolis even more intensely when viewed from a park.
Green park belts
The Dykzigt Expansion Plan was gradually implemented from 1928, and Witteveen mainly incorporated elements from the design urban planner Pieter Verhagen had proposed to the city committee in 1924. Witteveen suspected that, as Rotterdam’s population grew, so would the need for an urban park for relaxation and contact with nature. But given the rapid pace of urbanisation, he thought making large parks in Rotterdam was unworkable.
In the expansion plan for the Land van Hoboken and the major expansion plan for Rotterdam a year later, he proposed connecting long parks and wide singels to create green walking routes that lead to larger parks. Walking paths meandering through and around the city would offer the urban population peace and quiet, thus making Rotterdam more attractive. In Witteveen’s vision, the Land van Hoboken would become part of a more extensive green route for walking and cycling from the Maas, via Het Park to the Land van Hoboken, via the leafy Westersingel to the zoo, and via Spoorsingel to the future Blijdorp neighbourhood. On the west side, the Land van Hoboken would connect to Heemraadsingel.
In his plan for the Land van Hoboken, Witteveen created several atmospheres: the Hoboken villa, the surrounding park with ponds, winding paths, and loosely planted tree areas that leave the landscape intact. Indeed, these areas dovetailed beautifully with the design of Het Park on the Maas. From this scenic part of the landscape, one walked to the city through a more geometric garden layout and was increasingly surrounded by urban buildings. The Land van Hoboken thus became part of a walk from the Maas to the north and a link in a much larger system of parkways for walking.
New Rotterdam urban regeneration
Witteveen’s design also reflected the ambitions of the New Rotterdam Association for Urban Regeneration. He highlighted this area’s potential to increase Rotterdam’s urban grandeur, and his design concentrated on culture and education facilities that he wanted to build on the Land’s perimeter. The cultural park was to include a museum (Museum Boijmans by A. van der Steur, with a museum garden, 1935), a community college (unrealised), an open-air theatre (1936), a gymnasium (the Erasmian Gymnasium, which is realised further west), a chic department store on the site of the current Parkhotel and a strip of luxurious modernist residential villas with spacious gardens, signifying cultural renewal.
Museum Park in the late 1930s
Witteveen’s proposal was, for the most part, implemented. Thus the area remainedlargely untouched. Only similar height buildings appeared on the perimeter, evenly framing the ample, open space. Footpaths cut through the site. Museum Boijmans and the gardens of the modern villas, including Sonneveld House, formed a green zone on the park’s periphery. Different garden atmospheres typified this part of the former Land van Hoboken, such as the romantic estate, with its ponds, tall trees and winding paths, and Museum Boijmans, whose then modern, geometric garden layout was intended for strolling. Sonneveld House and the other villas had private gardens conducive to healthy and active family life.
Space for shelter, experimentation and food production
After the Rotterdam bombardment in May 1940, the Land van Hoboken unexpectedly acquired a new role: that of a shelter. Hundreds of Rotterdammers fled to the area and watched the city go up flames. Some of the parks and lawns quickly become potato fields in anticipation of wartime food shortages. The Land van Hoboken saw prompt manifestations of physical and mental reconstruction. Dispossessed shopkeepers immediately set to work with Rotterdam architects, such as J.A. Brinkman & J.H. van den Broek, W. van Tijen & H. Maaskant, Margry and S. van Ravesteyn, to design and build temporary shops and cafés that were completed by the autumn of 1940. The shops’ simple constructions were intended for six years of use. The situation necessitated experiments and innovations in retailing: the usual arrangement of a ground floor shop and residential house above made way for just a shop. The façades could be higher with lavish and expressive signage. Rear access roads for the expedition of goods separateed stock deliveries from the shopping street, a novelty that became common practice in post-war shopping precincts, such as Rotterdam’s Lijnbaan.
Space for expositions
In the 1950s, the Land van Hoboken and Het Park accommodated other uses, namely the largescale expositions Rotterdam Ahoy in 1950 and Energie 55 in 1955, which showcased and celebrated the port city’s reconstruction. The Floriade International Garden and Agriculture Exhibition followed in 1960, combining educational and recreational aims. Besides foregrounding technical accomplishments, such as horticultural product innovations, Floriade also offered recreational spaces, such as bulb fields and plant and flower exhibitions. The entire area, mainly influenced by landscape architect C. van Empelen, presented enormous amounts and varieties of bulb fields, orchards and greenhouses for crops such as tomatoes and cucumbers.
Parts of the Floriade had a lasting influence on the landscaping of the Land van Hoboken, Het Park and the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen garden. The latter made more space for roses in preparation for the Floriade, replacing many lawns with L-shaped and square rose beds. The contemporary rose pergola, designed by Van den Broek and Bakema, was also constructed for Floriade. A newly trimmed beech hedge (partly present in Van der Steur’s original design for the museum) provided a sheltered area for the rose beds. The garden’s new asymmetrically and orthogonally arranged paths, echoing the geometrical structure of Van der Steur’s design, allowed Floriade visitors to enjoy the roses fully. Het Park’s other permanent green spaces were a geometric ‘baroque’ garden in front of the Herenhuis, the ‘natural’ botanical garden and an avenue of rhododendrons and Japanese azaleas on the former ditch dividing the two country estates.
Photographs in OMA’s archive show what Museum Park looked like in the 1980s and how the Dykzigt Expansion Plan’s principles had evolved. Instead of a vital city park with cultural and public facilities connected to Het Park and the singels, we see a fragmented area intersected by traffic routes and with many large-scale facilities that have steadily encroached on the open park. Other facilities, such as a petrol station, were far removed from Witteveen’s vision. The Erasmus University Medical Centre on Westzeedijk intruded on the south-west side. The dike had been raised as part of the Delta Works, further separating Het Park and Museum Park. A wooded park surrounded Villa Hoboken. Museum Boijmans’ geometrically landscaped garden and the villas, including Sonneveld House and the Boevé Residence, nestled among trees. The park also consisted of tree-lined lawns in an ordered pattern. A petrol station stood at the north-western tip, and temporary structures and a car park occupied Het Nieuwe Instituut’s present-day location.
This situation changes in 1987 when the idea of a cultural area, initially proposed in the 1920s, was given new impetus. The intention was to develop the former Land van Hoboken as a district for four museums: the Natural History Museum in the former Villa Van Hoboken (Dijkzigt), the Kunsthal, the Netherlands Architecture Institute and the existing Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. The City of Rotterdam commissioned OMA to design the Kunsthal on the park’s southern side. OMA also participated in the multifaceted design for the Netherlands Architecture Institute, allowing for coordination between the two new-build museums and the park. Museum Park’s planning began in 1989. Rem Koolhaas, French landscape architect Yves Brunier and Petra Blaisse collaborated to develop the concept put forward by the municipality’s Urban Development Department. The new park would be a green zone connecting these museums and providing space for public events.
The collage-like designs, brightly coloured drawings and poetically abstract visualisations envisaged an entirely new ambition for the urban park phenomenon. Koolhaas recruited young French landscape architect Yves Brunier, a 1986 graduate from Versaille’s Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Paysage. Koolhaas’s ideas about the tension between the city and countryside appealed to Brunier, who concretised them in an exciting and challenging design typified by different atmospheres, such as a stage for urban activities and a landscape garden.
Although the designers never explicitly mentioned it, their layout has features of the old estate: a pond garden, a formal garden and a landscape garden. These three aspects remain subtly perceptible in the park, both in terms of structure and experience. Other traces also remain visible: a few old trees from the estate, the old ditch that now separates Sophia Children’s Hospital and Museum Park, and the old contour of the open-air theatre built for the Volksuniversiteit in the 1930s.
From the northern edge, people on foot can choose from two routes. Hasty city pedestrians have a straight ‘fast lane’ path along the Museum Boijmans garden to the Kunsthal. Those with more time can experience successive atmospheres and zones: a pond around Het Nieuwe Instituut, then an apple orchard with whitewashed trunks arranged in tight lines on a shell-gravel terrain. The orchard has a mirrored wall, beyond which is an elevated asphalt area for cultural activities, such as festivals, theatre events and an outdoor cinema. Next is a flower garden with old trees, some of which date from the time of the Hoboken estate. The flowerbeds take inspiration from Brazilian artist and landscape designer Roberto Burle Marx (1909–1994), who studied in Berlin in the 1920s and was influenced by Paul Klee, Pablo Picasso and Wassily Kandinsky. He ‘painted’ his gardens in sweeping monochrome swathes, and this garden translates his aesthetic into a large colourful carpet. One then crosses a bridge that arches over a stream of pebbles (recalling the old estate’s atmosphere) to arrive at a paved area, the site of the former villa’s garden, around the Kunsthal. On the Kunsthal’s roof is a garden with pear trees.
Recent studies show that the Land van Hoboken and Museum Park couldn’t have existed without the wealth accumulated by their former owners, some of which was from colonial trade. This past is evident in the greenery, the open space and surrounding buildings. The spaciously leafy character inspired Rotterdam’s elite and Witteveen to construct an urban park with cultural amenities. In doing so, they laid the foundation for the area’s later cultural uses in the 1980s and beyond. Alongside increased traffic, these cultural functions have become more prominent.
Although the recent Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen treats us to a roof garden and an unparalleled urban view in a mirror, Museum Park’s recent development also shows the vulnerability of the city’s green spaces. Recognising their cultural and historical value is often difficult in the everyday environment. What was once part of a larger park can, due to poor maintenance, become a residual space and easily fall prey to building and redevelopment. The archives indicate how differently this area could have turned out. A 50-hectare park with magnificent views and experiences of space. Sylvan glades and meres in the middle of Rotterdam stretching from Nieuwe Binnenweg to the Maas. A truly green park with walking and cycling routes through a bustling city. Maybe an ecosystem for urban plants, birds, animals, insects, fungi and microbes. Or even a city park with clearly defined atmospheres and functions – as in OMA’s design, which was a refreshing idea in landscape architecture of the 1980s.
This essay, therefore, advocates more significant historical awareness of existing parks and green spaces. Before transforming them, one should interrogate the spatial designs and green structures they were once part of. Such knowledge is precious when creating new parks and green spaces.
Landscape architecture office Gustafson Porter is currently redesigning Museum Park to make it relatively car-free and changing its landscaping. The ponds around Het Nieuwe Instituut will function as water storage, with a clean water system provided by aquatic plants. There will be trees, perennials and flower bulbs, benches, cycling lanes and walking paths, some in the form of decking. The New Garden, Het Nieuwe Instituut’s outdoor space, is also being redesigned. In spring 2015, artist Frank Bruggeman and landscaper Hans Engelbrecht designed the New Garden along ecological lines with scope for rewilding, making a statement about urban nature management. The new design maintains the pursuit of biodiversity and explores possibilities for the garden to be a safe and welcoming place for visitors and passers-by.
- D. Broekhuizen, Cultuurhistorische verkenning museumtuin Boijmans-Van Beuningen [A Cultural-historical exploration of the Boijmans-Van Beuningen museum garden], Gemeente Rotterdam, 2010
- Noor Mens, W.G. Witteveen en Rotterdam [W.G. Witteveen and Rotterdam], Rotterdam, 010 Publishers, 2007
- Marinke Steenhuis, Stedenbouw in het landschap. Pieter Verhagen (1982-1950) [Urbanism in the Landscape. Pieter Verhagen (1982–1950)], Rotterdam, NAI Publishers, 2007
- Bram Oosterwijk, Koning van de Koopvaart. Anthony van Hoboken (1756-1850) [King of Merchant Shipping. Anthony van Hoboken (1756-1850)], Amsterdam, De Bataafsche Leeuw, 1996
- Codula Rooijendijk, Vrije jongens, een geschiedenis van de Nederlandse handel [Mavericks: A history of Dutch trade], Atlas Contact, Amsterdam/Antwerp, 2014
- Pauline van Roosmalen, ‘Een ander Rotterdam: Sporen van het koloniale verleden in architectuur en stedenbouw’ [Another Rotterdam: Traces of the Colonial Past in Architecture and Urban Planning], in Het koloniale verleden van Rotterdam [Rotterdam’s Colonial Past] ed. Gert Oostindie, Amsterdam, Boom Uitgevers, 2020. PDF
- Josi Smit, Radboud van Beekum, J.D. Zocher jr. Architect en tuinarchitect [J.D. Zocher Jr. Architect and landscape gardener], Stichting BONAS, Rotterdam, 2008
- Kim Zweerink, Het Park, Afdeling Ruimtelijke Ordening/bureau Monumenten, dS+V/Gemeente Rotterdam, 2008
- Paul Groenendijk about emergency shops in Rotterdam. (article, Dutch only)
- Rotterdammers van formaat [Rotterdammers of stature], ep. 10 Anthony van Hoboken (video)
- Museum Park, with Petra Blaisse and Marinke Steenhuis, Het Nieuwe Instituut, 2005. (video)