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Haarlemmermeer

Haarlemmermeer is a municipality in the Netherlands, in the province of North Holland. It is a polder, consisting of land reclaimed from water, and the name Haarlemmermeer means Haarlem's Lake, still referring to the body of water from which the region was reclaimed in the 19th century.Its main town is Hoofddorp. It is one of the largest towns (pop. 70,030) in the Netherlands whose name is not used as the name of a municipality. This town, together with the rapidly growing towns of Nieuw-Vennep and Badhoevedorp, forms part of the Randstad agglomeration. The Netherlands' main international airport Schiphol is located in Haarlemmermeer.HistoryThe original Haarlemmer Lake is said to have been mostly a peat bog, a relic of a northern arm of the Rhine which passed through the district in Roman times. In 1531 the original Haarlemmermeer had an area of 26.0km2, and near it were three smaller lakes: the Leidsche Meer, the Spiering Meer, and the Oude Meer, with a combined area of about 31km2.The four lakes were formed into one by successive floods, with the Haarlemmermeer name being applied to the combined lake. Villages disappeared in the process. One of those villages was Vennep, after which the modern Nieuw-Vennep was named. In Dutch, the tendency for lakes to grow over time is called the waterwolf.
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