Marstunnel Zutphen: a Colorful Underpass
Since I was in the neighborhood, I took the opportunity to visit the Marstunnel in Zutphen. Another recently completed project in the east of the country in which I’ve put an lot of hours. Among other things, I made the artist impressions for the project when I was working at Royal HaskoningDHV.
The name Marstunnel has nothing to do with the Red Planet and also not with candy bars. It refers to business park De Mars (The Swamp). The new tunnel connects that area, and the new district Noorderhaven, with Zutphen’s scenic old town center. It replaces the level crossing.
Responsible for the architecture of the tunnel is Mari Baauw of Railinfra Solutions (which is a joint venture of Deutsche Bahn International, Royal HaskoningDHV and Witteveen + Bos)
A striking feature of this architecture is the use of materials: brick on both floors and walls. This refers to the nearby historic town center of Zutphen. In a way, the underpass becomes part of the old town.
What makes the passage under the tracks really spectacular is the light art by Herman Kuijer. Thousands of LED lights create a colorful pattern in the tunnel that very slowly changes color.
Although the implementation of the idea is completely different, this underpass in fact does the same thing as the Van Kregtentunnel in Wierden: use color to make the journey under the tracks more pleasant and even turn it into a special experience.