Trotyl press shop
Built in 1952, not a monument
This used to be the trotyl press shop. Trotyl is short for trinitrotulene, an explosive used to fill grenades. In the workshop, the trotyl was weighed then pressed into small cubes. Mixing, pressing, and grinding improves the contact between an explosive and the oxydizing agent. The explosive force increases and the explosive becomes more compact, so that it can be used to, say, fill hand grenades and cartridges. Precautionary measures were taken in the press shop building to minimize the impact of an explosion. In the event of an explosion, the semi-curved roof directed the impact of a blast wave towards the north of the site. Here, woods had been planted as a buffer between the site and the city of Zaandam. The wave could not be directed south, as the administrative buildings were located on the waterfront.
The northwest side of the building was clad with panels to seal off the press room. On this side there was also a screen of posts, to limit the effect of an explosion. The extension served as a tool store and pump house. Later on, chemical materials were stored here.
Currently, the building is home to Ultra Ultra, a creative agency for social issues. They develop high-profile projects that raise awareness, encourage debate, and make people think.
More information: https://www.ultra-ultra.nl/