Case Study - Astellas Pharma Europe (previously Yamanouchi) - Meppel, N.E. Holland


Courtesy of

Architect: Johann van den Noort

Installed by: Schagen BV

Timing: 1998-2004

The Problem

The company, Astellas Pharma Europe (previously Yamanouchi) produces expensive pharmaceutical medicines and in 1998 this area was hit by very heavy rainfall which caused extensive flooding in the immediate vicinity of this factory.

At board level, a decision was taken to investigate the feasibility of either moving the whole factory and relocating it to higher ground, or building a flood wall around the factory to protect it.

The Solution

Following a period of intensive consultations with the engineer, Johann van den Noort, it became clear that the installation of a ‘passive’ flood defence system utilising the completely new technology of the Self Closing Flood Barrier would be the most cost effective solution.

This was to be the first installation of its kind in the world. An inexpensive concrete dyke wall was built around the factory leaving a major access point into the factory. Following the successful installation of the first barrier, the second phase of the project created a new access point to the factory and was similarly protected.

The company has seen continued expansion and with the further development of the site, they again opted to protect their vital assets with a third barrier which was planned as part of the development. The installation of this barrier and the final completion of the project took place within just one day, with all surrounding pavements and access points finished.

  • Phase1: 1998: 1 barrier 6m wide x 1m high
  • Phase2: 2000: 1 barrier 6m wide x 1m high
  • Phase3: 2004: 1 barrier 11m wide x 1m high


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