Light Factory (2010) sur Erik Zachte

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Where in The Netherlands does one find a power station downtown? In Leyden! This station, nicknamed the Light Factory, does not only generate electricity for the power grid, it also provices central heating for the neighbourhood. The chimney, which is over 100 years old, is the highest building in Leyden, and is a great landmark for orientation, visible from the countryside far beyond Leyden. Illuminated by spotlights it is even more prominent at night, and yet another good reason why the power station earned its nickname.

Many centuries ago the Singel was, as many Dutch 'singels' (canals which surround a castel or town), a vital part of the defence works of the old town of Leyden. It served Leyden well during the long and bitter siege (1573-1574) by the Spaniards, an event of national importance in the Eighty Years' War. Nowadays the canal is mostly the domain of water fowl, in particular geese.

In 2012 Leyden decided to embark on an ambitious mission, namely to transform the 6 kilometers Singel (almost 4 miles) into "The Longest Park of the Netherlands", by connecting already green zones like the Hortus Botanicus (Botanical Garden), and several plantations into one contiguous green walking zone. New York's High Line is often named as source of inspiration. There will also be a footpath next to the Light Factory.

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Erik Zachte photo de profilResearcher & Wikipedian. On even days opinionated nuance-seeker, on odd days into oddities

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