The history of crossing rivers

Strategies and Places

The report which Irene Boertien and I made focusses on the history of the crossing of the rivers Meuse and Rhine. This topic will feature ferries and bridges crossing these two rivers. The research question: “To what extent have the rivers Meuse and Rhine influenced the routes of passengers in the Netherlands?” is examined on four scales. Starting with a big area with the entire Meuse and Rhine (scale 1: the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany), to a small area, zoomed in two cities (Venlo and Arnhem).

By investigating directions and routes that have arisen over the rivers, we noticed that a network or grid with nodes appears. The nodes are in cities on the curvature of the rivers. Bridges provide a large an fast network (network of cities) and ferry services ensure the more local and tortuous network (the accessibility of villages).