Impact story

Nature-based salt marsh development in the port of Delfzijl

The municipality of Delfzijl is facing coastal safety issues and is concerned with the poor ecological condition of the Ems Dollard estuary. It commissioned the knowledge consortium EcoShape with the task of a ‘Building with Nature’ design for the coastal region, including a beach, a salt marsh park accessible to residents, and a pioneer salt marsh landscape.

This is improving the experience of the coast while simultaneously creating a natural area that contributes to water quality, ecology, and coastal safety. On behalf of the consortium, Royal HaskoningDHV, Arcadis, Deltares, and Wageningen Marine Research are collaborating on this plan, called Marconi Buitendijks.

The salt marsh landscape has been designated as a test location. The aim is to study the best way to construct marshes. In test plots, experiments are carried out with various sand/silt proportions and the sowing of glasswort seeds to stimulate marsh growth.

The trial in Delfzijl, which involves using natural materials native to the region, yields valuable knowledge and experience on how to construct salt marshes under difficult conditions. This knowledge can then be applied to other port and delta areas both nationally and internationally. 

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