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Building with Nature

Boskalis initiated the innovative research program ‘Building with Nature’. The program uses elements and forces of nature such as wind and currents in the design of hydraulic engineering solutions, to achieve a balance between economic development and environmental care. Scientific research findings are made available for the design and execution of projects and for policy and decision-making. The initiative is a close collaboration between the Dutch government and Dutch companies, universities and knowledge institutes, with Ecoshape as lead partner.

Environmental engineering

Building with Nature draws as far as possible on ecosystem services – the benefits that nature generates for society, for example when dunes act as coastal defenses, also providing leisure opportunities. To maintain the Dutch coast, Boskalis has constructed the so-called Sand Motor that uses natural forces like wind, waves, currents and tides to spread sand along the coast from a central replenishment location. Building with Nature is also researching methods for the sustainable development of ports.

Building with Nature gains insights into the impact of hydraulic engineering projects on ecosystems.

More related to Building with Nature


Hydronamic is Boskalis’ in-house engineering company, providing port and waterway engineering and project development expertise.

Research and

Boskalis continuously invests in research and development to increase the sustainability, efficiency and effectiveness of its operations.

Coastal protection

Boskalis constructs traditional hard sea defenses and innovative soft sea defenses.

Environmental services

Boskalis provides a broad range of environmental services including remediation of contaminated land and dredged sediment.


Find out more about Building with Nature on the website of project lead, Ecoshape.