Deventer: Return of the Pontoon Bridge

For about 350 years, the Deventer Pontoon Bridge was an important connection between the west and east of the Netherlands. With the opening of nearby Wilhelmina Bridge in 1948, this remarkable river crossing became obsolete. But now the Pontoon Bridge is back, or well, a nostalgic reference to it. As a by-catch of the Room for the River project.


A few days before Christmas, I was in Deventer once again. This time I was more lucky with the weather than a few months ago. Finally the sky looked more or less like in the images and animations that I made for Room for the River. And also the bank near the IJsselhotel looked like it did in my visualizations, since the project, with the aim to reduce the risk of flooding, has recently been completed.

For an optimum experience, when viewing the animation the use of headphones is recommended:

Ruimte voor de rivier-Deventer

The new channel

From Wilhelmina Bridge, you have a nice overview of the area. On the right we see the river IJssel, on the left Worp Park with the IJssel Hotel,  and in the foreground the newly created channel that connects a nearby lake called Bolwerksplas with the river:

Overview from Wilhelmina Bridge in Deventer with park De worp, the IJsselhotel, the ferryboat, the new pontoon bridge, the new channel, the peninsula, the river and the railway bridge
The new channel and the IJssel river

The pontoon bridge

As an extension of the Avenue, at the former location (1600-1948) of the famous pontoon bridge, a pier has been constructed for the ferry. The pier has a floating section and as a result can be used even at extreme water levels. The design, with the floating part built on two boats, is referring to the historic bridge:

The skyline of Deventer with Saint Lebuinus church, the ferryboat and the new pontoon bridge seen from the Worp near the IJsselhotel
View from Worp Park towards Deventer


The pier is a beautiful spot to view the Room for the River project, though the Deventer skyline, dominated by Lebuïnus Church, also attracts a lot of attention:

View from the new pontoon bridge towards Deventer with Wellekade and Saint Lebuinus Church
On the bridge deck

Islands in the stream

From the pier there is also a good view of the peninsula between the river and the new channel, as well as the new island breakwaters in the river:

View from the pontoon bridge in Deventer with wilhelmina Bridge and the peninsula between the river IJssel and the new channel
Island breakwaters

The staircase

Next to the pier at the new embankment, a staircase with seating elements has been made, which also creates a fine place to enjoy the view. On this day in December it was in fact almost warm enough to have a picnic:

the new embankment at De Worp, made as part of the Room for the river project, with stairs and benches
The bank near IJsselhotel

Under the bridge

Of course we also take a look underneath the pier. A sturdy anthracite colored steel construction with a wooden deck:

Looking under the new jetty/pontoonbridge at the Worp in Deventer with in the background the skyline of the city with Saint Lebuinus Church
View under the bridge deck

One last glance

And from the city side quay we take one last look at Worp Park with the new pontoon bridge:

Park de Worp in Deventer with ferry, IJsselhotel and the new pontoon bridge seen from the quay on the cityside
View from the city

Other Room for the River projects: NijmegenNoordwaard – IJsseldelta

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