Jan Christiaan van Wijk
Hendrik Pieter Berlage
This horseshoe-shaped clearing (Koningin Emmaplein) is built up with townhouses in neo-Renaissance style by the architect J.C. van Wijk, best known for his designs for arcades in The Hague and Rotterdam. The townhouses are sumptuously turned out with bay windows, coloured bands, ornaments, medallions and a welter of other decorations. The two head ends on Westzeedijk are part of the overall composition; the centremost premises and those on the corners possess tower-like structures. These townhouses were intended for well-to-do citizens from the world of shipping. The Mayor J. Wytema, the Bishop of Rotterdam and Donker publishing house have been among the square's more illustrious occupants. These days most of the townhouses are being used as offices. A large ornamental vase designed by Berlage graces the public garden.