During the last ten years, the aesthetic qualities of rural areas have become a growing concern\ud among Dutch policy-makers as well as among the general public. Especially the ribbon-like\ud development of industrial estates along the main motorways attracts attention. In August 2008 the\ud Minister of the Environment and Spatial Planning proposed the designation of nine so-called\ud national motorway-panoramas to safeguard a number of the most characteristic views from the\ud motorways. These panoramas are situated where motorways cross the National Landscapes that\ud were designated some years earlier. They strengthen the case of the national landscapes, but at the\ud same time illustrate the weakness of this type of area proving it insufficient to stop developments.\ud This paper focuses on the national landscapes and gives a critical overview of the aims and\ud limitations of this concept
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