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Frankfurt am Main


With 763,380 inhabitants (December 31, 2019), Frankfurt am Main is the largest city in Hesse and the fifth largest in Germany. It is not a district and forms the center of the Frankfurt metropolitan area with more than 2.3 million inhabitants. Around 5.8 million people live in the entire Frankfurt / Rhine-Main metropolitan region.

Frankfurt am Main has been one of Germany's major urban centers since the Middle Ages. First mentioned in a document in 794, it had been an imperial city since 1372. By the end of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, most of the Roman-German kings were elected in Frankfurt am Main and, since 1562, were also crowned emperors. From 1815 on, the Free City of Frankfurt was a sovereign member state of the German Confederation. The Federal Assembly met here and in 1848/49 the first German parliament met with the National Assembly in the Paulskirche. After the German War in 1866, Prussia annexed the Free City of Frankfurt. Due to the rapid industrialization, a population surge began. Since 1875 the city has had over 100,000 inhabitants, since 1928 more than 500,000, since 2013 more than 700,000. As a sign of the commitment to European unification, Frankfurt has been calling itself European City since 1998.

Today Frankfurt am Main is one of the most important international financial centers, an important industrial, service and exhibition center and is one of the world's cities. Frankfurt am Main is the seat of the European Central Bank, the Deutsche Bundesbank, the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, numerous financial institutions (including Deutsche Bank, Commerzbank, DZ Bank, KfW), the supervisory authorities BaFin and EIOPA and Messe Frankfurt. The Frankfurt Book Fair and the Music Fair are considered to be the world's leading trade fairs in their fields, and the International Motor Show took place here until 2019. The city is also the seat of many national sports associations, including the German Olympic Sports Confederation, the German Football Association and the German Motor Sport Association.

Thanks to its central location, Frankfurt am Main is a European transport hub. The airport is one of the largest in the world, the main train station is a central railway junction and the Frankfurter Kreuz is the busiest road junction in Germany. In addition, DE-CIX in Frankfurt is the world's largest Internet node in terms of throughput.

A specialty for a European city is the steadily growing high-rise skyline of Frankfurt. Some striking skyscrapers are among the tallest in Europe. That is why Frankfurt am Main is sometimes ironically referred to as Mainhattan. Historic landmarks of the city are the old opera and the partly reconstructed ensemble of the old town with Römerberg including Römer town hall, Dom-Römer-Areal and Kaiserdom. More than 40 percent of the urban area are parks and landscape protection areas, including the Frankfurt Green Belt with the Frankfurt City Forest, which the city has owned since 1372.

The city's cultural life is traditionally characterized by civic foundations, patronage and liberal private initiatives. This resulted in the Städtische Bühnen with the two sections Oper Frankfurt and Schauspiel Frankfurt, the Frankfurt Museumsufer, the Senckenberg Nature Museum, the Schirn Kunsthalle and the Museum of Modern Art, the Historical Museum and Goethe's birthplace in the old town, the Alte Oper and the English Theater , the zoo and the palm garden. The Goethe University, founded in 1914 by a community foundation as the Royal University, is the fourth largest German university in terms of number of students. It produced several Leibniz and Nobel Prize winners. There are also seven other state, church and private universities in the city with a total of over 60,000 students.