Hauptwache (Frankfurt am Main)
The Hauptwache is a central point of Frankfurt am Main
Frankfurt am Main , commonly known simply as Frankfurt, is the largest city in the German state of Hesse and the fifth-largest city in Germany, with a 2010 population of 688,249. The urban area had an estimated population of 2,300,000 in 2010...

 and is one of the most famous plazas in the city. The original name Schillerplatz was superseded in the early 1900s.

The Hauptwache building

The baroque
The Baroque is a period and the style that used exaggerated motion and clear, easily interpreted detail to produce drama, tension, exuberance, and grandeur in sculpture, painting, literature, dance, and music...

 building which gave the square its name was built in 1730. It was the headquarters of the city's Stadtwehr militia when Frankfurt was an independent city state and also contained a prison. In the 18th century Frankfurt still had city walls and its own army. In 1833 during the Frankfurter Wachensturm
Frankfurter Wachensturm
The Frankfurter Wachensturm on April 3rd 1833 was a failed attempt to start a revolution in Germany.-Events:...

, the Hauptwache was stormed in failed effort by a small revolutionary force. When Prussia
Prussia was a German kingdom and historic state originating out of the Duchy of Prussia and the Margraviate of Brandenburg. For centuries, the House of Hohenzollern ruled Prussia, successfully expanding its size by way of an unusually well-organized and effective army. Prussia shaped the history...

 annexed the city in 1866 and took over military activities, the Hauptwache lost this role.

The prison remained and the Hauptwache also became a police station. In 1904, the building was used as a café
A café , also spelled cafe, in most countries refers to an establishment which focuses on serving coffee, like an American coffeehouse. In the United States, it may refer to an informal restaurant, offering a range of hot meals and made-to-order sandwiches...

 and remains one to this day. Heavily burned in World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 bombing, it was reopened in a provisional form with an altered roof in 1954. In 1967, with the building of the U-Bahn
Frankfurt U-Bahn
The Frankfurt U-Bahn, together with the Frankfurt S-Bahn and the Frankfurt Straßenbahn, is the backbone of the public transport system of Frankfurt, Germany. Its name derives from the German term for underground, Untergrundbahn. The U-Bahn opened in 1968 and now consists of 87 stations on nine...

 tunnel through the city, it was dismantled so it could be moved and rebuilt over the new underground U-Bahn station. The plaza has undergone another major renovation when the S-Bahn
Rhine-Main S-Bahn
The Rhine-Main S-Bahn system is an integrated rapid transit and commuter transport system for the Frankfurt/Rhine-Main region, which includes the cities Frankfurt am Main, Wiesbaden, Mainz, Offenbach am Main, Hanau and Darmstadt...

 station for suburban trains was opened in 1978.

Today, Hauptwache station
Frankfurt (Main) Hauptwache station
Hauptwache station is a major station in Frankfurt am Main with 181,000 passengers per day, making it the second busiest rapid transit station in the city and a major hub for rail transport in the Frankfurt/Rhine-Main region. It is served by eight S-Bahn lines—S1–S6 and S8/S9—and 6 U-Bahn...

 serves as one of the most important crosspoints of the Frankfurt public transport system
Public transport in Frankfurt am Main
The public transit system in Frankfurt consists of several carriers who all utilise the same fare system. Therefore, one ticket is valid for a journey which may include several modes of transit run by different operators....

. Eight of nine S-Bahn lines serve the station as well as five of seven U-Bahn lines.

The Plaza

The plaza has been reformed several times. Its current appearance is marked by a sunken terrace leading down to underground pedestrian area with shops and the public transport station. Frankfurters call the sunken area "the Hole" (das Loch).

The plaza contains a number of different architectural styles. Apart from the baroque
The Baroque is a period and the style that used exaggerated motion and clear, easily interpreted detail to produce drama, tension, exuberance, and grandeur in sculpture, painting, literature, dance, and music...

 Hauptwache itself, the surrounding buildings are mostly new architecture because of the damage from the war.

Connecting streets

  • Shopping district streets
    • Straßenzug Biebergasse/Fressgass
    • Schillerstraße
    • Steinweg
    • Liebfrauenstraße
    • Zeil
      The Zeil is a street in the city centre of Frankfurt, Germany. The name, which dates back to the 14th century, is derived from the German word Zeile 'row' and originally referred to a row of houses on the eastern end of the north side; the name was not extended to the entire street until...

  • Thoroughfare Streets
    • Straßenzug Roßmarkt/Kaiserstraße
    • Große Eschenheimer Straße

External links

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