In 1940 and 1941 the Germans failed to defeat England and turned their gaze eastward. After performing an attack on the Soviet Union a potential dreaded two front war increased. On December 14, 1941 the German supreme command decided to build a defenceline along the west coast of occupied Europe, the "Atlanticwall". The construction of this defenceline took place between 1942 - 1944. The Atlanticwall was a defence line of 2685 kilometer (!) from Norway, through Denmark, Germany, Netherlands and Belgium to France to the border with Spain. The defenceline (which was never fully completed) consisted of bunkers, guns, fences and minefields.
The leadership of the building activities of the Atlanticwall was the Organization Todt (OT). This was a
semi-military government construction force
and contracted local construction companies to carry out the work. The Abteilung Siedlung und Bauten, a division of the
Rijkscommissariaat Neder-land, was also responsible for the construction of several bunkercomplexes in The Netherlands.
The Hague and Scheveningen became also a part of the Atlanticwall and were hit hardly by the construction activities of the Atlanticwall. During the German occupation, the beach of Scheveningen was initially accessible for the general public but due the construction of the Atlanticwall in the spring of 1942 the beach was declared as prohibited area (Sperrgebiet).
Soon afterward 350 houses in the coastal village of Duindorp and Scheveningen were eva-cuated and demolished. And in October 1942 a larger area of Scheveningen with a part of The Hague-west was also declared as Sperrgebiet. Around 30,000 houses were demolis-hed and about 50,000 trees in parks and forests were cleared. Large-scale evacuations hitted 140,000 inhabitants and of the more than 28,550 houses in the 'fortress' was 90% evacuated. Many of the evacuees arrived in Aalten.
A tankditch of 5.5 kilometers long and 27 meters wide was constructed to prevent a rapid advance of the Allies. The tankditch was zigzagging from Kijkduin, along the Sportlaan, the current President Kennedylaan and Johan de Wittlaan to Zorgvliet. The barricade continued as a tankwall and a barrier with long rows of dragon's teeth toward the Waterpartij (also dugged up as a tankditch), continued to the Kanaal and made a nod just along the Plesmanweg. Then it headed in a straight line along the existing water near the Kwekerijweg to the Van Alkemadelaan and the dune area. This long defenceline was known as the Hauptkampflinie (HKL). In the Hauptkampflinie were 12 official entrances with a free access possibility. Along the landward side of the Hauptkampf-linie was a 600 meter area as a field of fire to defend Scheveningen from seaside and landside.
The Atlanticwall contained a serie of supportingareas and were different in size and significance. The highest status that an area could get was a Festung and was only given to important strategic areas like around major harbors. The second highest status for a defended area was a Verteidi-gungsbereich. Scheveningen didn't got the status of a Festung but got the status Stützpunktgruppe due the coastal location and the classifying as
administrative and military center. In the immediate vicinity of the Stützpunktgruppe Scheveningen were some other important objects such as the Scheinflughafen Ockenburg near Loosduinen, the headquarters of the Befehlshaber der Waffen-SS in den Niederlanden in Voorburg and at park Overvoorde (Rijswijk) the Luftwaffe Horch Kompanie.
After the war the city tried to demolish the bunkers as much as possible. The central gover-nment
subsidized this "debris removal" only when it was absolutely necessary to resume the normal life. The bunkers were mostly kept when removal was not subsidized at places where the bunkers were not obstructing. Therefore, the remains of the bunkers resides in natural
areas. Due the housingcrisis many bunkers got useful functions such as a lodging for the scouting or as a mushroom farm.
In addition, the Cold War triggered a renewed inte-rest from the military authorities.
In 1996 the Mayor and Aldermen of The Hague placed 17 separate bunkers
and 6 bunker-complexes on the Municipal Monumentlist. This because of their culturehistorical value and their importance for science.