Local Heart, Global Soul

March 8, 2015

The Elephant In The …. City

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

As you enter  the city of The Hague you pass by many buildings that have become architectural icons of the city.

Most of these are fairly modern additions to the landscape of the city, and line the route of the A12  highway as it morphs into the Utrechtsebaan.

Once we reach the  green expanse of the Marlieveld however, and are about to turn either left into Zuid Hollandlaan or right into the Benoordenhoutseweg  (a.k.a. the “N44”) one iconic building will have your complete attention all to itself.

It’s even got it’s own nickname: “de Rode Olifant”  (The Red Elephant).

I tried to find out more about the building and it’s history , both were sparse (I suspect the the decent information is in the archives at the Stadhuis (City Hall) but I’m not mobile enough to get there and have too much pain to focus properly so will have to make do with translating some information found on-line.

The websites are both in the Dutch language (and links as usual are at the bottom of this post.)

The building known affectionately as “the red elephant” is an imposing building built in the Amsterdam School style, which once served as headquarters of the Esso oil company.  

The structure is red brick with many ornaments and decorations. According to local legend the story is that it was built in order to have a view down on it’s oil company competitor Shell, with the tower of the “elephant” looking the Shell building a few streets away directly in the eye. The Hague Montessori Lyceum (a High School nearby) has  used the basement for it’s yearly projects  of various topics.  

The building is bordered by Jozef Israëlslaan, Zuid Hollandlaan and Mesdagstraat ans was for some years the premises of the law firm Brown and Westbroek. In 2009 the building was renovated and has been looking for a permanent owner ever since.

It’s a building that I like a great deal… and I really hope that it gets a permanent owner really soon.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

http://wikimapia.org/16817/nl/De-Rode-Olifant

http://www.staalnieuwestijl.nl/blog.php?c=Architectuur

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