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Hilversum, Netherlands

Natuurbrug Zanderij Crailoo

The world's longest wildlife overpass provides Hilversum's critters with a safe alternative to trying their luck on the roadway. 

The Netherlands is home to over 600 wildlife crossings known as ecoducts. The longest of these is Natuurbrug Zanderij Crailoo, which spans a distance of 800 meters long and 50 meters wide.

The Netherlands’ ecoducts provide safe passage for animals attempting to traverse a habitat that’s been bisected by major roadways; rather than try their luck with traffic, native populations of deer, wild boar, and the endangered European badger can simply wander across on one of these designated wildlife bridges that’s been planted to simulate the surrounding environs.

Natuurbrug Zanderij Crailoo was completed in 2006. Roughly translated as “sand quarry natural bridge,” it leads animals safely across the N524 roadway and nearby railways to the surrounding wooded areas, spanning a business park, river, and sports complex in the process.

While structures like Natuurbrug Zanderij Crailoo are exciting examples of the union between conservation efforts and architectural innovation, curious sightseers should bear in mind that their presence on these natural bridges may discourage wildlife from using the ecoducts.

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