What is heritage?

Heritage is a collective term for all the cultural-historical value of the past. This includes monuments, archaeologically valuable areas and finds, landscapes, protected cityscapes, archives and objects and collections in museums.

National Monuments

Zoetermeer has 15 national monuments. National monuments are of national importance. Besides the municipality, the state is also responsible. The basis for protection and preservation of national monuments is in the Environment Act. For more information: National Monument Activity in the Environment Act | Information Point Living Environment (iplo.nl).

Map showing national and municipal monuments in Zoetermeer

Municipal monuments

Municipal monuments are monuments of local or regional importance. The municipality is responsible for their protection. The legal basis for this is found in the municipal Heritage Ordinance, which contains the rules on municipal monuments. For more information: Erfgoedverordening Zoetermeer 2022 | Local laws and regulations (overheid.nl).

Map of national and municipal monuments

This map shows the parcels and buildings/objects belonging to the national and municipal monuments. If you are going to rebuild or demolish or use a monument in a different way on these parcels, you will need an environmental permit.

On the map you will also find the reasoning description of the municipal monuments. The reasoning description indicates why a building/object is a monument. In a decision on an application for example to change the use of a monument, to rebuild or to demolish, the reasoned description is leading.

Since December 15, 2020, all municipal monuments in Zoetermeer have a monument id (found on the map Erfgoed Zoetermeer ). If you are applying for a permit that affects a municipal monument, please enter this number on the application form.

Cityscapes Zoetermeer

Protected city or village views are groups of immovable properties that are of general interest because of their aesthetic value, their mutual spatial or structural cohesion, or their scientific or cultural-historical value. The legal basis is found in the municipal Heritage Ordinance, which includes rules on protected city or village views. For more information: Erfgoedverordening Zoetermeer 2022 | Local laws and regulations (overheid.nl).

Zoetermeer has 5 protected cityscapes, designated in February 2006 for their valuable character:

  • Dorpsstraat, de historische dorpskern met een goed bewaarde weg-, water- en groenstructuur.
  • Meerpolder, Rhineland's oldest reclaimed land, designated as a top area of cultural heritage in the Belvedere memo.
  • Voorweg, the best-preserved historic polder ribbon.
  • Wilhelmina Park, the oldest neighborhood park.
  • Koepeltjesbuurt in Meerzicht, characteristic calling card of Zoetermeer due to the white houses with orange domes.

Map protected cityscapes Zoetermeer

Grant scheme for maintenance of monuments and other funding opportunities

Do you own a municipal monument in Zoetermeer? Then you can apply for a subsidy for standard maintenance. For all information, see Subsidy - Monument.

Archaeology Zoetermeer

Much of value can also be found underground. When rebuilding, demolishing buildings or paving the garden or roads, valuable archaeological data can be lost. There are 11 archaeologically protected areas in Zoetermeer:

  • The village sterp (Dorpsstraat)
  • Den Hoorn
  • Delft and Leidsewallen
  • Zegwaartseweg
  • East Quay
  • Hildam
  • Front Road
  • Fleming Street
  • North Aasche Vliet
  • Landshed
  • Zoetermeer Meerpolder

Heritage Ordinance Zoetermeer

The Zoetermeer Heritage Ordinance was published at www.overheid.nl. On this website you can view and search all ordinances applicable to the city of Zoetermeer by various criteria.

Open Monument Day

In 1987 the national Open Monumentendag was organized for the first time. The City of Zoetermeer, always in close cooperation with the Historical Society Oud Soetermeer, has participated from the beginning. The aim of Open Monumentendag is to bring people into contact with their historic, built environment and thus increase interest in monuments. During this day - every second Saturday in September - many monuments are open for a visit between 10:00 and 16:00. They are often the scene of a variety of activities such as exhibitions, tours, lectures and concerts.

Every year a national theme is established. Very successful in Zoetermeer were the theme "Modern Monuments" (2007) in which municipal architect Jan Dekker (1893-1954) was put in the spotlight, "Traces from the Past" (2009) and the "Taste of the 19th Century" with emphasis on Zoetermeer dairy (2010).

It has now become good practice that every year on the occasion of Open Monument Day, together with the Historical Society Oud Soetermeer a booklet is published on a subject related to that year's theme.

Open Monument Day Sept. 9 and 10, 2023

The theme of the 2023 Open Monument Day Zoetermeer was "Living Heritage.