Radio Kootwijk – Radio Kootwijk, Netherlands - Atlas Obscura

Radio Kootwijk

Radio Kootwijk, Netherlands

This disused VLF radio station is no longer in service but the surrounding town still bears its name. 

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Radio Kootwijk was once the only way the Netherlands had to communicate with their holdings in the Dutch East Indies.

Built from 1918 Radio Kootwijk was originally built (and used for only three years) as a Very Low Frequency radio station to connect to the Dutch Indies (now Indonesia). VLF Radio uses enormous antennas and energy to operate. This spurred the building of the town which surrounds the station and which was unimaginatively also named Radio Kootwijk. Within three years of start of operations in 1925, more effective forms of communication the station became available and the enormous main building became obsolete and was closed. Three smaller buildings housing shortwave radio were built to communicate with the colonies.

The main building (Building A) now hosts concerts and the occasional film shoot. The building, which is an atmospheric mixture of Amsterdam and Berlin influences, combined with the landscape provokes an eerie yet tranquil feeling. The station was built far away from any radio interference which in the Netherlands meant building inside the largest (but still modest by international standards) national park. 

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