Innenstadt (Frankfurt am Main)
The Innenstadt is the central district of Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

. It is part of the Ortsbezirk Innenstadt I, and is subdivided into 5 Stadtbezirke. It stretches in the north and east round the district of Altstadt
Altstadt (Frankfurt am Main)
Altstadt or old city is a district or Stadtteil of Frankfurt am Main, Germany, located on the northern Main bank. It is part of the Ortsbezirk Innenstadt I. It is surrounded by the Stadtteil of Innenstadt...

. Other adjacent districts to the west are Bahnhofsviertel
Bahnhofsviertel (Frankfurt am Main)
The Bahnhofsviertel is a district or Stadtteil of Frankfurt am Main. It is part of the Ortsbezirk Innenstadt I. It was developed between 1891 and 1915 on the land of the established Westbahnhof.-Geography:...

, in the north west the Westend
Westend (Frankfurt am Main)
The Westend area of Frankfurt contains the two districts of Westend-Nord and Westend-Süd. The Westend with its Wilhelminian style buildings is a beloved residential quarter...

, Nordend
Nordend (Frankfurt am Main)
The Nordend is a district of the German city of Frankfurt am Main. While it officially consists of the two administrative districts Nordend-Ost and Nordend-West, the "Nordend" is normally seen as one unit by the locals who live here...

 to the north and Ostend
Ostend (Frankfurt am Main)
Ostend is a borough of Frankfurt am Main, Germany. It is part of the Ortsbezirk Innenstadt IV, and is subdivided into 4 Stadtbezirke. It is home to several brothels located along the Main River. The most famous of these brothels, or "Puffs," is the Eros-Center with its ubiquitous "legs" entrance...

 to the east. In the south, the Innenstadt is bordered naturally by the Main on the opposite bank of which stands the Applewine
Cider in Germany is called Apfelwein , as the German language has not used the word cider. It is also regionally known as ebbelwoi, äppler, stöffsche, apfelmost , viez , and saurer most . It has an alcohol content of 5.5%–7% and a tart, sour taste...

 quarter known as Sachsenhausen
Sachsenhausen (Frankfurt am Main)
Sachsenhausen is a part of the city of Frankfurt, Germany. Composed of two districts: Sachsenhausen-Nord and Sachsenhausen-Süd, it is part of the Ortsbezirk Süd. It is located on the South bank of the Main river, right in the city center, opposite the Old Town.Sachsenhausen was founded as...


The Innenstadt and Altstadt were formed within the borders made up of the anlage (stretches of grassy park land) lying to the right of the Main and are thereby clearly recognisable on the city plan.

The enclosures of park land of a contrast to the skyscrapers and the banking quarter. The 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...

, Frankfurt's most famous street, as well as the central squares Hauptwache
Hauptwache (Frankfurt am Main)
The Hauptwache is a central point of Frankfurt am Main and is one of the most famous plazas in the city. The original name Schillerplatz was superseded in the early 1900s.- The Hauptwache building :...

 and Konstablerwache
Konstablerwache is a central square in the centre of Frankfurt am Main and part of its pedestrian zone. It lies to the east of Hauptwache with both squares linked by the Zeil, the central shopping area of the city.-History:...

, can be found in the Innenstadt. On the Fressgass the bankers and office workers from the nearby office blocks have lunch.

Areas and quarter, streets and squares

The Innenstadt is divided, from west to east, in into the following parts:


The Bankenviertel
Bankenviertel (Frankfurt am Main)
The Bankenviertel is an area in the city centre of Frankfurt, Germany.It is not an official city district but it is a commonly used designation to describe the not exactly defined area where most of Germanys major banks have their headquarters and where many foreign banks have their representation...

 lies on both sides of the Taunusanlage and is shared between the boroughs of the Innenstadt, Bahnhofsviertel and the Westend. Most credit institutes in the eastern banking quarter are situated in Neuen Mainzer Straße, Großen Gallusstraße, Junghofstraße and the surrounding streets. All these streets are locations for skyscrapers, whose highest is the 300 metre Commerzbank Tower
Commerzbank Tower
Commerzbank Tower, located in the city centre of Frankfurt, Germany, is the tallest completed skyscraper in the European Union. After it was completed in 1997 it ranked as the tallest skyscraper in Europe until 2005 when it was surpassed by the Triumph-Palace in Moscow...

The southern part of the quarter shows a greater range of use, especially along Kaiserstraße and at Kaiserplatz. The Frankfurter Hof, one of the best known hotels in the city, is located here. In Großen Hirschgraben, the border with the Altstadt, lies one of the cultural highlights of the city, the Goethe House
Goethe House
The Goethe House in the old town of Frankfurt am Main was the family residence of the Goethe family, most notably Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, until 1795. Johann Wolfgang was himself born here in 1749 to his parents, Johann Caspar Goethe, a lawyer, and Katherine Elisabeth Textor, daughter of the...


Opera quarter

The main axis of the north western part of the Innenstadt is Große Bockenheimer Straße, running from Rathenauplatz to Opernplatz, as a result of the many places to eat better known as the Fressgass. The southern Goethestraße which runs parallel to the Freßgass is the most expensive shopping street in the city. The Opernplatz which lies within the parks of the old city walls is considered to be one of the most beautiful squares in the city. The Frankfurt Stock Exchange
Frankfurt Stock Exchange
The Frankfurt Stock Exchange is the world's 12th largest stock exchange by market capitalization. Located in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, the Frankfurt Stock Exchange is owned and operated by Deutsche Börse, which also owns the European futures exchange Eurex and the clearing company...

 lies in the shopping street called Schillerstraße.

The successive squares Rathenauplatz, Goetheplatz and Roßmarkt form the intersection to the neighbouring quarters around the Zeil.

The streets around the Freßgass are one of the focus points of Frankfurt's nightlife. In Kleinen Bockenheimer Straße is the Jazzkeller, an important cultural institution.

Zeil and surroundings

The pedestrian zone of the 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...

 and its end points of Hauptwache and Konstablerwache are the central point for shopping in the city. Between the large department stores are shopping centres like the Zeilgalerie
Zeilgalerie is a shopping centre located at the Zeil in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. It was opened in September 1992 and is 41 metres tall with 10 floors, one of which is underground. There are approximately 70 stores situated in the 41 metre long building....

 and FrankfurtHochVier (the latter of which is under construction). Other important streets begin at Hauptwache such as the Roßmarkt, Steinweg, Schillerstraße and Große Eschenheimer Straße. In the latter of these the Palais Thurn und Taxis (which is currently being reconstructed) used to stand, as well as important buildings from the post war years like the Fernmeldehochhaus and the Rundschau-Haus. At its north end stands the Eschenheimer Turm
Eschenheimer Turm
Eschenheimer Turm was a city gate part of the late-medieval fortifications of Frankfurt am Main and is a landmark of the city...

, a relict of the city fortifications of the late Middle Ages. The Katharinenkirche
Katharinenkirche, Frankfurt
St. Catherine's Church is the largest Lutheran church in Frankfurt am Main, dedicated to the martyred early Christian saint, Catherine of Alexandria. It is located in the city centre near one of the most famous plazas in the city, the Hauptwache.This church is built in the baroque style and stands...

, the main Protestant church of Frankfurt, stands at Hauptwache; on Bleichstraße the Peterskirche, with its preserved cemetery, is the only green space in the district. The area between Konstablerwache and Alter Gasse is the centre of the gay and lesbian community of Frankfurt.

Courts quarter

The north eastern Innenstadt is bordered by the eastern half of the Zeil, Konrad-Adenauer-Straße and the Friedberger Anlage. The law courts and its numerous buildings, including the higher regional court, the regional court, and an institute for remand can be found around this area in Heiligkreuzgasse. Several vocational colleges can be found in a noteworthy 1950s multi-story building on Seilerstraße.

The courts are supposed to be moved to new buildings on Adickesallee in Nordend in the forthcoming years, the character of the courts quarter would therefore completely change and new uses would be found for the area.

In Heiligkreuzgasse lies Frankfurts well known variety show, the Tigerpalast. The Odeon on the Anlagenring at Seilerstraße is a classic exhibition pavilion which was built for Simon Moritz von Bethmann. Nowadays this is used as a disco.

All Saints quarter

The small quarter between the Zeil and Battonnstraße forms a multicultural island in a city otherwise dedicated to commerce. The Breite Gasse forms a second red light district
Red Light District
Red Light District may refer to:* Red-light district - a neighborhood where prostitution is common* The Red Light District - the title of the 2004 album by rapper Ludacris* Red Light District Video - a pornography studio based in Los Angeles, California...

 after that of the Bahnhofsviertel. The city library is located at the Zeil and on Langen Straße there are several city council departments. With the reconstruction of the newly laid Kurt-Schumacher-Straße these council offices overlap the Frankfurter Judengasse
Frankfurter Judengasse
The Frankfurter Judengasse was the Jewish ghetto of Frankfurt and one of the earliest ghettos in Germany. It existed from 1462 until 1796 and was home to Germany's largest Jewish community in early modern times....

, a Jewish Ghetto.


The south eastern quarter of the Innenstadt was first built-up in the early 19th century, after the previous boggy area was drained out. The Börneplatz synagogue was located at Börneplatz up until the destruction of the synagogue during the Kristallnacht
Kristallnacht, also referred to as the Night of Broken Glass, and also Reichskristallnacht, Pogromnacht, and Novemberpogrome, was a pogrom or series of attacks against Jews throughout Nazi Germany and parts of Austria on 9–10 November 1938.Jewish homes were ransacked, as were shops, towns and...

 programme in 1938 and it was a centre of Jewish
Judaism ) is the "religion, philosophy, and way of life" of the Jewish people...

 life in Frankfurt. The Jewish cemetery in Battonnstraße is one of the oldest in Europe. Besides this the central offices for public services and the local labour office can be found in the Fischerfeldviertel.

The settlement of the Neustadt

Today's Innenstadt was located outside the town walls until the 14th century. Other than the exposed parks the area was already built-up. Thus a row of houses developed from a cattle market to the north of the walled in town and this market lent its name to the new street: the Zeil. Highways ran to the east and west of that through the town gates into adjacent areas, such as the homes of Bockenheim
Bockenheim (Frankfurt am Main)
Bockenheim is a district or Stadtteil of Frankfurt am Main, Hessen, Germany. It is part of the Ortsbezirk Innenstadt II, and is subdivided into 7 Stadtbezirke. It is in the west-central part of the city and covers an area of 540.1 ha...

 and the Bockenheimer fort, in which there were already houses and gardens.

The establishment of the Neustadt began in the year 1333, when Emperor Ludwig Der Bayer of the free realm approved of an expansion which would provide three times the previous area to the town. In the time soon after, the town erected new fortifications with five towers: The Gallustor (also Mainzer or Galgentor) on the site of the modern day Willy-Brandt-Platz, the Bockenheimer Tor on the site of the current Opernplatz, the Eschenheimer Tor, the Friedberger Tor and the Allerheiligentor. In the course of the following years the town's new area was filled with streets and buildings, whereby above all rich cloth dealers used the opportunity to establish representative domiciles for themselves outside the narrow old parts of the town. The Eschenheimer Turm, the most glorious tower of the new fortifications, was finished in 1428.
The first churches in Neustadt were two small chapels near Bockenheimer gate: the Heiligkreuz chapel of a poor hospital in 1346 as well as the neighbouring Kloster chapel of the Holy Katharina and Barbara in 1354. From the latter the larger seventeenth century Katharinenkirche developed. In the north of the Neustadt the Peterskirche was constructed in 1381, which has been the parochial church of the Neustadt since 1453. Aside from this a cemetery was laid out in this location in 1452, which became the only cemetery on the right side of the main after the closure of the cathedral in 1508. Until the opening of today's main cemetery in 1828 the Peterskirchhof (which was extended several times in the years between) remained the most important cemetery in the town. In 1453 another church was built in the Neustadt, the Maternkapelle at Roßmarkt.

In the 15th century there were still numerous areas of undeveloped land and many gardens in the Neustadt. The Altstadt was, at to this time, still the preferential quarter of the city, the Neustadt was settled mainly by immigrants flowing from the country into the increasing city. In the 16th century the old city ditch (which was the last deer ditch in 1584) between Altstadt and Neustadt was filled in.

Grand bourgois buildings

In the following era gradually the weight of the city shifted between the old and the new town, the new town houses of rich citizens were now built in the Neustadt. These served as accommodation for the royal delegations of emperors who held their coronations in the city. The best known city palace was the Palais Thurn und Taxis of 1737 in Große Eschenheimer Straße. A few years prior to this in 1730 the still preserved police headquarters were built in the heart of the Neustadt. On the Zeil, in particular, a number of representative community centres and the palace of Barckhausen developed in the 18th century. The palace was used for three years as an imperial residence due to Wittelsbacher Karl VII's war with Austria
Austria , officially the Republic of Austria , is a landlocked country of roughly 8.4 million people in Central Europe. It is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the...

 preventing him from moving back into his Munich
Munich The city's motto is "" . Before 2006, it was "Weltstadt mit Herz" . Its native name, , is derived from the Old High German Munichen, meaning "by the monks' place". The city's name derives from the monks of the Benedictine order who founded the city; hence the monk depicted on the city's coat...


In the active developmental period of the classic era, the best known community centre was the Goethe house in the large deer ditch of the Neustadt. In 1755 an urban horse stable developed at Roßmarkt. In 1782 the Komödienhaus (comedy house), the first definite sign of the future of theatres in Frankfurt, was built on today's Rathenauplatz. Land development of the Fischerfeld in the southeast of the new city began in 1792 from the plans of the architect general, Johann George Christian Hess. The most important of the buildings developed there was municipal library on the bank of the Main, sketched by Hess, which opened in 1825.

In 1804, during continuing occupation by French
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 troops in the coalition wars, the city council decided upon the removal and replacement of the city walls. In the course of the following years a barrier of plants was put in place which is still there as the Anlagen (parks) of today. The plants were placed under the protection of a decree in 1807 which prevented further land development on the now natural barrier.

The Neustadt became the scene of revolutionary events in 1833: particularly the watch towers at Hauptwache and Konstablerwache. The national assembly in Frankfurt met in 1848/9 in the Paulskirche, the largest and most modern hall of the city located in the Altstadt. However, the different political and parliamentary groups met in accommodation and cafés throughout the Neustadt.

A monument to Goethe was erected at Roßmarkt in 1844, which was moved to the Gallusanlage where it has stood since 1952. 1858 saw the erection of a monument for Johannes Gutenberg which was also placed in Roßmarkt, and another for Friedrich Schiller
Friedrich Schiller
Johann Christoph Friedrich von Schiller was a German poet, philosopher, historian, and playwright. During the last seventeen years of his life , Schiller struck up a productive, if complicated, friendship with already famous and influential Johann Wolfgang von Goethe...

 in 1864 which initially stood at Hauptwache but was moved to Goetheplatz in 1878 and then to the Taunusanlage in 1955. It was late in the city's history before it decided on the construction of a monument to Bismarck
Otto von Bismarck
Otto Eduard Leopold, Prince of Bismarck, Duke of Lauenburg , simply known as Otto von Bismarck, was a Prussian-German statesman whose actions unified Germany, made it a major player in world affairs, and created a balance of power that kept Europe at peace after 1871.As Minister President of...

, which was set up in the Gallusanlage but later melted down in 1940. The citizens of Frankfurt established a venue in Junghofstraße as a festival and concert hall in 1859. The new main synagogue was inaugurated in Börnerstraße in 1860, and in 1882 another synagogue followed at Börneplatz.

The Neustadt as a large modern city

After the Austro-Prussian War
Austro-Prussian War
The Austro-Prussian War was a war fought in 1866 between the German Confederation under the leadership of the Austrian Empire and its German allies on one side and the Kingdom of Prussia with its German allies and Italy on the...

, Frankfurt quickly developed into one of the more modern cities of Germany. Until that point the wide, meshed road system of the Neustadt had been consolidated by tearing down houses and other areas to allow for splendorous boulevards. After 1870, Kaiserstraße and Kaiserplatz became the main connection between Hauptwache and the western train stations. In 1876, the hotel Frankfurt Hof opened on Kaiserplatz, from which point on it was known as the "First House on the Square". After further demolition the new Zeil, Schillerstrasse and Goethestrasse were laid. The extension of the Neuen Mainzer Straße was finished in 1874 with a bridge named Untermainbrücke. The newly built home of the Stock exchange was opened in 1879 close to Hauptwache. The Opera House was established and inaugurated in 1880 following the donations of Frankfurt's citizens. The new law courts were opened in Heiligkreuzstrasse in 1889 and followed by the theatre in Untermainanlage in 1902.

The rapid process of growth in the new city led to the formation of a town centre. The previous residential districts developed into a commercial and business centre and the residents were soon ejected from the area.

The trams were changed to electrical operation from 1899, whereby the city had a modern and efficient traffic service. The central traffic node of the trams was situated at Hauptwache, numerous lines lead through the Zeil, which developed into a road of large department stores.

In the years after the first world war the emphasis of the development concerning town construction shifted more towards the outside quarters. The medieval parts of the city centre fell victim, as those in the Gothic Altstadt did, to the numerous allied air raids of 1943-44.

Above all the reconstruction considered the needs of urban traffic and accepted modern town planning. Thus, completely new traffic axles were laid, for instance, Konrad-Adenauer-Strasse and the Zeil were considerably widened during their reconstruction. The redevelopment of the city centre brought the Innenstadt into the 1960s. The building of the underground system changed and from 1963, after intense construction measures, a large underground rapid-transit station was built underneath Hauptwache and Konstablerwache. The Zeil and the Fressgas were turned into pedestrian zones and until 1986 most tram lines were shut down. The western part of the Innenstadt a banking quarter formed around the model of the American Central Business Districts. Since the 1970s this western part has seen numerous new skyscrapers, the best known of which include the BfG at Willy-Brandt-Platz and the Commerzbank Tower
Commerzbank Tower
Commerzbank Tower, located in the city centre of Frankfurt, Germany, is the tallest completed skyscraper in the European Union. After it was completed in 1997 it ranked as the tallest skyscraper in Europe until 2005 when it was surpassed by the Triumph-Palace in Moscow...

 at Kaiserplatz.


All Nippon Airways
All Nippon Airways
, also known as or ANA, is one of the largest airlines in Japan. It is headquartered at the Shiodome City Center in the Shiodome area in Minato, Tokyo, Japan. It operates services to 49 destinations in Japan and 35 international routes and employed over 14,000 employees as of May 2009...

 and Japan Airlines
Japan Airlines
is an airline headquartered in Shinagawa, Tokyo, Japan. It is the flag carrier of Japan and its main hubs are Tokyo's Narita International Airport and Tokyo International Airport , as well as Nagoya's Chūbu Centrair International Airport and Osaka's Kansai International Airport...

have their Frankfurt offices in Innenstadt.

External links

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