Assen is a municipality and city in the north of the Dutch province of Drenthe, of which it is the capital. The area of the municipality is 83.5 km². On August 1, 2020, the municipality had 68,798 inhabitants (source: CBS). A resident of Assen is called an Assenaar. Assen is part of the Groningen-Assen region partnership.



The city of Assen is located in an es-village landscape. In addition to the town of Assen, the municipality includes the villages of Witten, Loon, Rhee, Ter Aard, Ubbena, a part of Vries, Zeijerveen and Zeijerveld. In addition, the hamlets of Anreep, De Haar, Schieven and Graswijk belong to the municipality of Assen.

Residential areas
After 1900, the development of Assen gained momentum. In the period before the Second World War, employment and with it the population grew to about 22,000 people. After 1945 that number doubled.

After the Second World War, a number of large residential areas were built. Assen has nine residential areas, which are sometimes divided into neighborhoods. The oldest is the center, after which “over the track” Assen-Oost was built, which is popularly called Vredeveld. From the past, this district can be divided into different neighborhoods, such as the Red, Blue and White village, the Schildersbuurt, Amelterhout and the residential areas Sluisdennen, Vreebergen and Houtlaan. A new residential area is being set up in Assen-Oost, Park Diepstroeten, on the former site of the Hendrik van Boeijenoord foundation.

The second extension in Assen is the Lariks and Noorderpark districts, then Vredeveld and Noorderpark were enlarged and the Pittelo district was built. The Assen-West district was established in the early 1970s; this consists of the neighborhoods Baggelhuizen, Kortbossen and Westerpark. Peelo and Marsdijk were built in the 80s and 90s. Kloosterveen followed in 1997, named after an old hamlet where more than 11,000 people live (2015). The district is divided into 15 residential areas with various living styles. In the heart of the district, the shopping center 'Kloosterveste' was opened in 2010.



In 1259 the Maria nunnery in Campis or Mariënkamp was moved from Coevorden to a sand ridge on the spot where the center of Assen now lies. Most of the canals that were dug at that time were later filled in, but the current street names (Gedempte Singel, Noordersingel, Oostersingel and Zuidersingel) are still reminders of this. The monastery was closed in 1602, after which the main building was taken into use as a meeting place for, among others, the College of Deputies. Later in the 17th century a real settlement arose within the canals, about a circle with a diameter of 300 meters. It was not until late in the 18th century that Assen was expanded beyond this area. The previously rather insignificant Assen only became an attractive place to live for the wealthy in the province around that time. Examples of notable houses are Huize Overcingel and the White House.

Commissioned by Lodewijk Napoleon, who chose Assen as his summer residence, it became an independent municipality in 1807 and a city in 1809. This makes it one of the youngest cities with city rights in the Netherlands. The grand urban development plan that he had made by the Italian architect Carlo Giovanni Francesco Giudici remained virtually unexecuted. In 1814 Assen became the capital of Drenthe.