The Kruithuis is a unique historical building unlike any other in the Netherlands. The local town council ordered it to be built in 1621 fearing that the government would exclude the city from the lucrative ammunition storage trade in the future if they didn't. During the Dutch War of Independence between the Netherlands and Spain, weapons and gunpowder were stowed throughout the city, which was far from safe. Hence Jan van der Weeghen, both engineer and physician, received the assignment to build an ammunition depot. For less than the equivalent of today's €10,000 (an enormous sum back then) this prominent hexagonal building was erected in three years. Today it serves a much different purpose; it functions as a contemporary art museum and gallery. The building houses not only paintings, but also sculpture, video exhibits, ceramics, graphics, photographs and other art installations.