For those who think Strukton only appeared in 1974, a little bit of history. We’re at the end of the First World War. There are practically no building materials, there’s huge economic uncertainty and contractors are coping with high risk margins. How then would you create new, high-profile offices for almost 1,500 employees? This was the question occupying the non-profit venture called Nederlandse Spoorwegen (later to become the Dutch railway operator NS). Who would be able to build such an impressive new edifice?
We’ll do it ourselves
The solution to the problem quickly became apparent: we’ll do it ourselves. We took over De Molenheide brickworks in Schijndel and produced 22 million bricks under our own steam. For the 4,000 cubic metres of oak, we simply bought a Limburg forest. We opened a joinery works immediately, to prepare the oak for construction. Then we bought two motor vessels to transport all the building materials along the Utrecht canals ourselves.
And all that created a splendid national monument: ‘De Inktpot’, or literally, the ink-well. The largest brick building in the Netherlands, in Moreelsepark in Utrecht, currently used as the headquarters for ProRail.
From De Inktpot to Strukton
The creation of De Inktpot also saw the founding of ‘N.V. het Spoorwegbouwbedrijf’ in 1921. This relocated in 1952 from Schijndel to Maarssen, where in 1972 it merged with Christiani & Nielsen, a Danish construction company. And from this arose the Strukton Group in 1974. The self-starting attitude from just after the First World War is still in the company’s genes. And that brought about many years of strong growth, during which Strukton took over Reef Infra, Worksphere and the Italian CLF among others. Since 29 October 2010 Strukton has been part of Oranjewoud N.V., an exchange-listed concern.