Bonn

The Federal City of Bonn (German pronunciation: [bɔn] (listen)) is a city on the banks of the Rhine in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, with a population of over 300,000. About 24 km (15 mi) south-southeast of Cologne, Bonn is in the southernmost part of the Rhine-Ruhr region, Germany's largest metropolitan area, with over 11 million inhabitants.

Because of a political compromise following German reunification, the German federal government maintains a substantial presence in Bonn, and the city is considered a second, unofficial, capital of the country.[2] Bonn is the secondary seat of the President, the Chancellor, the Bundesrat and the primary seat of six federal government ministries and twenty federal authorities. The unique title of Federal City (German: Bundesstadt) reflects its important political status within Germany.[3]

Founded in the 1st century BC as a Roman settlement, Bonn is one of Germany's oldest cities. From 1597 to 1794, Bonn was the capital of the Electorate of Cologne, and residence of the Archbishops and Prince-electors of Cologne. Composer Ludwig van Beethoven was born in Bonn in 1770. From 1949 to 1990, Bonn was the provisional capital of West Germany, and Germany's present constitution, the Basic Law, was declared in the city in 1949. Berlin was re-affirmed by the Bundestag in Bonn as the capital of Germany, though due to the country's division a seat of government was maintained there solely by the German Democratic Republic, and only in the eastern half. From 1990 to 1999, Bonn served as the seat of government – but no longer capital – of reunited Germany.

The headquarters of Deutsche Post DHL and Deutsche Telekom, both DAX-listed corporations, are in Bonn. The city is home to the University of Bonn and a total of 20 United Nations institutions, including headquarters for Secretariat of the UN Framework Convention Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Secretariat of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), and the UN Volunteers programme.[4]

Bonn
A view over the Bundesviertel (the federal government district)
A view over the Bundesviertel (the federal government district)
Flag of Bonn
Flag
Coat of arms of Bonn
Coat of arms
Location of Bonn
Bonn is located in Germany
Bonn
Bonn
Bonn is located in North Rhine-Westphalia
Bonn
Bonn
Coordinates: 50°44′N 7°6′E / 50.733°N 7.100°ECoordinates: 50°44′N 7°6′E / 50.733°N 7.100°E
CountryGermany
StateNorth Rhine-Westphalia
Admin. regionCologne
DistrictUrban district
Founded1st century BC
Government
 • Lord MayorAshok-Alexander Sridharan (CDU)
Area
 • Total141.06 km2 (54.46 sq mi)
Elevation
60 m (200 ft)
Population
(2016-12-31)[1]
 • Total322,125
 • Density2,300/km2 (5,900/sq mi)
Time zoneCET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Postal codes
53111–53229
Dialling codes0228
Vehicle registrationBN
Websitewww.bonn.de

Geography

View over central Bonn as seen from the Stadthaus, including the Siebengebirge, a hill range on the east bank of the Middle Rhine.
View over central Bonn as seen from the Stadthaus, including the Siebengebirge, a hill range on the east bank of the Middle Rhine.

Topography

Situated in the southernmost part of the Rhine-Ruhr region, Germany's largest metropolitan area with over 11 million inhabitants, Bonn lies within the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, close to the border with Rhineland-Palatinate. Spanning an area of more 141.2 km2 (55 sq mi) on both sides of the river Rhine, almost three quarters of the city lie on the river's left bank.

To the south and to the west, Bonn is bordering the Eifel region which encompasses the Rhineland Nature Park. To the north, Bonn borders the Cologne Lowland. Natural borders are constituted by the river Sieg to the north-east and by the Siebengebirge (also known as the Seven Hills) to the east. The largest extension of the city in north-south dimensions is 15 km (9 mi) and 12.5 km (8 mi) in west-east dimensions. The city borders have a total length of 61 km (38 mi). The geographical centre of Bonn is the Bundeskanzlerplatz (Chancellor Square) in Bonn-Gronau.

Administration

The German state of North Rhine-Westphalia is divided into five governmental districts (German: Regierungsbezirk), and Bonn is part of the governmental district of Cologne (German: Regierungsbezirk Köln). Within this governmental district, the city of Bonn is an urban district in its own right. The urban district of Bonn is then again divided into four administrative municipal districts (German: Stadtbezirk). These are Bonn, Bonn-Bad Godesberg, Bonn-Beuel and Bonn-Hardtberg. In 1969, the independent towns of Bad Godesberg and Beuel as well as several villages were incorporated into Bonn, resulting in a city more than twice as large as before.

Administrative divisions of the Federal City of Bonn
Municipal district (Stadtbezirk) Coat of arms Population (as of December 2014)[5] Sub-district (Stadtteil)
Bad Godesberg Wappen des Stadtbezirks Bad Godesberg 73.172 Alt-Godesberg, Friesdorf, Godesberg-Nord, Godesberg-Villenviertel, Heiderhof, Hochkreuz, Lannesdorf, Mehlem, Muffendorf, Pennenfeld, Plittersdorf, Rüngsdorf, Schweinheim
Beuel Wappen des Stadtbezirks Beuel 66.695 Beuel-Mitte, Beuel-Ost, Geislar, Hoholz, Holtorf, Holzlar, Küdinghoven, Limperich, Oberkassel, Pützchen/Bechlinghoven, Ramersdorf, Schwarzrheindorf/Vilich-Rheindorf, Vilich, Vilich-Müldorf
Bonn Wappen des Stadtbezirks Bonn 149.733 Auerberg, Bonn-Castell (known until 2003 as Bonn-Nord), Bonn-Zentrum, Buschdorf, Dottendorf, Dransdorf, Endenich, Graurheindorf, Gronau, Ippendorf, Kessenich, Lessenich/Meßdorf, Nordstadt, Poppelsdorf, Röttgen, Südstadt, Tannenbusch, Ückesdorf, Venusberg, Weststadt
Hardtberg Wappen des Stadtbezirks Hardtberg 33.360 Brüser Berg, Duisdorf, Hardthöhe, Lengsdorf

Climate

Bonn has an oceanic climate (Cfb).[6] In the south of the Cologne lowland in the Rhine valley, Bonn is in one of Germany's warmest regions.

Climate data for Bonn
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 4.7
(40.5)
6.1
(43.0)
9.9
(49.8)
14.1
(57.4)
18.6
(65.5)
21.8
(71.2)
23.2
(73.8)
22.8
(73.0)
19.8
(67.6)
14.7
(58.5)
9
(48)
5.8
(42.4)
14.2
(57.6)
Daily mean °C (°F) 2.4
(36.3)
2.8
(37.0)
6.3
(43.3)
9.7
(49.5)
14.0
(57.2)
16.7
(62.1)
18.8
(65.8)
18.3
(64.9)
14.6
(58.3)
10.5
(50.9)
6.2
(43.2)
3.1
(37.6)
10.3
(50.5)
Average low °C (°F) −0.6
(30.9)
−0.4
(31.3)
1.6
(34.9)
4.5
(40.1)
8.1
(46.6)
11.3
(52.3)
13
(55)
12.5
(54.5)
10
(50)
6.4
(43.5)
3.2
(37.8)
0.6
(33.1)
5.9
(42.5)
Average rainfall mm (inches) 61.0
(2.40)
54.0
(2.13)
64.0
(2.52)
54.0
(2.13)
72.0
(2.83)
86.0
(3.39)
78.0
(3.07)
78.0
(3.07)
72.0
(2.83)
63.0
(2.48)
66.0
(2.60)
68.0
(2.68)
816.0
(32.13)
Mean monthly sunshine hours 51.0 76.0 110.0 163.0 190.0 195.0 209.0 194.0 141.0 104.0 55.0 41.0 1,529
Source #1: Deutscher Wetterdienst (Bonn-Rohleber, period 1971– 2010)
Source #2: Climate-Data.org, high and low averages (altitude: 64m)[6]

History

Founding and Roman times

2008-12-25 Bonn Sterntor
The Sterntor, originally built around 1244, is a gate reconstructed on the remnants of the medieval city wall.

The history of the city dates back to Roman times. In about 12 BC, the Roman army appears to have stationed a small unit in what is presently the historical centre of the city. Even earlier, the army had resettled members of a Germanic tribal group allied with Rome, the Ubii, in Bonn. The Latin name for that settlement, "Bonna", may stem from the original population of this and many other settlements in the area, the Eburoni. The Eburoni were members of a large tribal coalition effectively wiped out during the final phase of Caesar's War in Gaul. After several decades, the army gave up the small camp linked to the Ubii-settlement. During the 1st century AD, the army then chose a site to the north of the emerging town in what is now the section of Bonn-Castell to build a large military installation dubbed Castra Bonnensis, i.e., literally, "Fort Bonn". Initially built from wood, the fort was eventually rebuilt in stone. With additions, changes and new construction, the fort remained in use by the army into the waning days of the Western Roman Empire, possibly the mid-5th century. The structures themselves remained standing well into the Middle Ages, when they were called the Bonnburg. They were used by Frankish kings until they fell into disuse. Eventually, much of the building materials seem to have been re-used in the construction of Bonn's 13th-century city wall. The Sterntor (star gate) in the city center is a reconstruction using the last remnants of the medieval city wall.

To date, Bonn's Roman fort remains the largest fort of its type known from the ancient world, i.e. a fort built to accommodate a full-strength Imperial Legion and its auxiliaries. The fort covered an area of approximately 250,000 square metres (62 acres). Between its walls it contained a dense grid of streets and a multitude of buildings, ranging from spacious headquarters and large officers' quarters to barracks, stables and a military jail. Among the legions stationed in Bonn, the "1st", i.e. the Prima Legio Minervia, seems to have served here the longest. Units of the Bonn legion were deployed to theatres of war ranging from modern-day Algeria to what is now the Russian republic of Chechnya.

Altes Rathaus Bonn
The Altes Rathaus (old town hall) as seen from the central market square. It was built in 1737 in Rococo-style.

The chief Roman road linking the provincial capitals of Cologne and Mainz cut right through the fort where it joined the fort's main road (now, Römerstraße). Once past the South Gate, the Cologne–Mainz road continued along what are now streets named Belderberg, Adenauerallee et al. On both sides of the road, the local settlement, Bonna, grew into a sizeable Roman town. Bonn is shown on the 4th century Peutinger Map.

In late antiquity, much of the town seems to have been destroyed by marauding invaders. The remaining civilian population then took refuge inside the fort along with the remnants of the troops stationed here. During the final decades of Imperial rule, the troops were supplied by Franci chieftains employed by the Roman administration. When the end came, these troops simply shifted their allegiances to the new barbarian rulers, the Kingdom of the Franks. From the fort, the Bonnburg, as well as from a new medieval settlement to the South centered around what later became the minster, grew the medieval city of Bonn. Local legends arose from this period that the name of the village came from Saint Boniface via Vulgar Latin *Bonnifatia, but this proved to be a myth.

Middle Ages and Early Modern times

University bonn at night
Founded in 1818, the University of Bonn counts Nietzsche, Marx, and German chancellor Adenauer among its alumni.

Between the 11th and 13th centuries, the Romanesque style Bonn Minster was built, and in 1597 Bonn became the seat of the Archdiocese of Cologne. The city gained more influence and grew considerably. The city was subject to a major bombardment during the Siege of Bonn in 1689. The elector Clemens August (ruled 1723–1761) ordered the construction of a series of Baroque buildings which still give the city its character. Another memorable ruler was Max Franz (ruled 1784–1794), who founded the university and the spa quarter of Bad Godesberg. In addition he was a patron of the young Ludwig van Beethoven, who was born in Bonn in 1770; the elector financed the composer's first journey to Vienna.

In 1794, the city was seized by French troops, becoming a part of the First French Empire. In 1815 following the Napoleonic Wars, Bonn became part of the Kingdom of Prussia. Administered within the Prussian Rhine Province, the city became part of the German Empire in 1871 during the Prussian-led unification of Germany. Bonn was of little relevance in these years.

20th century and time as the capital of West Germany

During the Second World War, Bonn acquired military significance because of its strategic location on the Rhine, which formed a natural barrier to easy penetration into the German heartland from the west. The Allied ground advance into Germany reached Bonn on 7 March 1945, and the US 1st Infantry Division captured the city during the battle of 8–9 March 1945.[7]

Bundesarchiv B 145 Bild-F013859-0009, Bonn, Staatsbesuch Präsident Charles de Gaulle
French president Charles de Gaulle on state visit to Bonn (1962), the capital of West Germany until German reunification.

Following the Second World War, Bonn was in the British zone of occupation. Following the advocacy of West Germany's first chancellor, Konrad Adenauer, a former Cologne Mayor and a native of that area, Bonn became the de facto capital, officially designated the "temporary seat of the Federal institutions," of the newly formed Federal Republic of Germany in 1949. However, the Bundestag, seated in Bonn's Bundeshaus, affirmed Berlin's status as the German capital. Bonn was chosen as the provisional capital and seat of government despite the fact that Frankfurt already had most of the required facilities and using Bonn was estimated to be 95 million DM more expensive than using Frankfurt. However, Adenauer and other prominent politicians intended to make Berlin the capital of the reunified Germany, and felt that locating the capital in a major city like Frankfurt or Hamburg would imply a permanent capital and weaken support in West Germany for reunification.

In 1949, the Parliamentary Council in Bonn drafted and adopted the current German constitution, the Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany. As the political centre of West Germany, Bonn saw six Chancellors and six Presidents of the Federal Republic of Germany. Bonn's time as the capital of West Germany is commonly referred to as the Bonn Republic, in contrast to the Berlin Republic which followed reunification in 1990.[8]

After German reunification in 1990

Villa Hammerschmidt Bonn Seite Adenauerallee 20080831
Between 1950 and 1994, Villa Hammerschmidt was the primary official residence of the President of Germany. Today it serves as the President's secondary residence.

German reunification in 1990 made Berlin the nominal capital of Germany again. This decision did not mandate that the republic's political institutions would also move. While some argued for the seat of government to move to Berlin, others advocated leaving it in Bonn — a situation roughly analogous to that of the Netherlands, where Amsterdam is the capital but the Hague is the seat of government. Berlin's previous history as united Germany's capital was strongly connected with the German Empire, the Weimar Republic and more ominously with Nazi Germany. It was felt that a new peacefully united Germany should not be governed from a city connected to such overtones of war. Additionally, Bonn was closer to Brussels, headquarters of the European Economic Community. Former chancellor Willy Brandt caused considerable offence to the Western Allies during the debate by stating that France wouldn't have kept the seat of government at Vichy after Liberation.

The heated debate that resulted was settled by the Bundestag (Germany's parliament) only on 20 June 1991. By a vote of 338–320,[9] the Bundestag voted to move the seat of government to Berlin. The vote broke largely along regional lines, with legislators from the south and west favouring Bonn and legislators from the north and east voting for Berlin.[10][11] It also broke along generational lines as well; older legislators with memories of Berlin's past glory favoured Berlin, while younger legislators favoured Bonn. Ultimately, the votes of the eastern German legislators tipped the balance in favour of Berlin.[12]

From 1990 to 1999, Bonn served as the seat of government of reunited Germany. In recognition of its former status as German capital, it holds the name of Federal City (German: Bundesstadt). Bonn currently shares the status of Germany's seat of government with Berlin, with the President, the Chancellor and many government ministries maintaining substantial presences in Bonn. Over 8,000 of the 18,000 federal officials remain in Bonn.[2] A total of 19 United Nations (UN) institutions operate from Bonn today.

Politics

Ashok Alexander Sridharan, Oberbürgermeister Bonn
Ashok Alexander Sridharan (CDU) has been the mayor of Bonn since 2015.

City council

The city council of Bonn used to be based in the Rococo-style and 1737 built Altes Rathaus (old city hall) adjacent to Bonn's central market square. However, due to the enlargement of Bonn in 1969 through the incorporation of Beuel and Bad Godesberg, it moved into the larger Stadthaus facilities further up north. This was necessary for the city council to accommodate the increased number of representatives. The mayor of Bonn still sits in the Altes Rathaus, which is also used for representative and official purposes.

As of the 2014–2020 election cycle, the Christian Democrats (CDU) hold the majority of mandates in the city council (27 seats), followed by the Social Democrats (SPD) with 20 seats, the Greens (Bündnis '90/Die Grünen) with 16 seats, the Liberals (FDP) with 7 seats, the Left (Die Linke) with 5 seats, the local Bürgerbund Bonn with 4 seats, the Alternative for Germany (AfD) with 3 seats, and independent candidates with a total of 4 seats. There are currently 86 seats in the city council of Bonn.

Stadthaus-01-04-2013-133
The Stadthaus, home of the city council of Bonn.

The mayor is Ashok-Alexander Sridharan (CDU), directly elected in 2015.[13]

Landtag election

Four delegates represent the Federal city of Bonn in the Landtag of North Rhine-Westphalia. The last election took place in May 2012. The current delegates are Bernhard von Grünberg (SPD),Renate Hendricks (SPD), Joachim Stamp (FDP) and Rolf Beu (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen).

The next Landtag elections take place in May 2017.[14]

German federal election

Bonn's constituency is called Bundeswahlkreis Bonn (096). In the German federal election 2017, Ulrich Kelber (SPD) was elected a member of German Federal parliament, the Bundestag by direct mandate. It is his fifth term. Katja Dörner representing Bündnis 90/Die Grünen, Alexander Graf Lambsdorff for FDP and Claudia Lücking-Michel of the CDU were elected from regional lists.

The next federal election takes place on 24 October 2021.

Culture

Beethoven's birthplace is located in Bonngasse near the market place. Next to the market place is the Old City Hall, built in 1737 in Rococo style, under the rule of Clemens August of Bavaria. It is used for receptions of guests of the city, and as an office for the mayor. Nearby is the Kurfürstliches Schloss, built as a residence for the prince-elector and now the main building of the University of Bonn.

Bonner Münster
Erected in the 11th and 13th century, the Roman Catholic Minster of Bonn is one of Germany's oldest churches.

The Poppelsdorfer Allee is an avenue flanked by chestnut trees which had the first horsecar of the city. It connects the Kurfürstliches Schloss with the Poppelsdorfer Schloss, a palace that was built as a resort for the prince-electors in the first half of the 18th century, and whose grounds are now a botanical garden (the Botanischer Garten Bonn). This axis is interrupted by a railway line and Bonn Hauptbahnhof, a building erected in 1883/84.

The Beethoven Monument stands on the Münsterplatz, which is flanked by the Bonn Minster, one of Germany's oldest churches.

The three highest structures in the city are the WDR radio mast in Bonn-Venusberg (180 m or 590 ft), the headquarters of the Deutsche Post called Post Tower (162.5 m or 533 ft) and the former building for the German members of parliament Langer Eugen (114.7 m or 376 ft) now the location of the UN Campus.

Churches

Castles and residences

Modern buildings

Museums

Kunst- und Ausstellungshalle der Bundesrepublik Deutschland - Bundeskunsthalle-9245
The Bundeskunsthalle focusses on the cultural heritage outside of Germany or Europe, at the crossroads of culture, the arts, and science.

Just as Bonn's other four major museums, the Haus der Geschichte or Museum of the History of the Federal Republic of Germany, is located on the so-called Museumsmeile ("Museum Mile"). The Haus der Geschichte is one of the foremost German museums of contemporary German history, with branches in Berlin and Leipzig. In its permanent exhibition, the Haus der Geschichte presents German history from 1945 until the present, also shedding light on Bonn's own role as former capital of West Germany. Numerous temporary exhibitions emphasize different features, such as Nazism or important personalities in German history.[20]

The Kunstmuseum Bonn or Bonn Museum of Modern Art is an art museum founded in 1947. The Kunstmuseum exhibits both temporary exhibitions and its permanent collection. The latter is focused on Rhenish Expressionism and post-war German art.[21] German artists on display include Georg Baselitz, Joseph Beuys, Hanne Darboven, Anselm Kiefer, Blinky Palermo and Wolf Vostell. The museum owns one of the largest collections of artwork by Expressionist painter August Macke. His work is also on display in the August-Macke-Haus, located in Macke's former home where he lived from 1911 to 1914.

2014-06-12 Museum Koenig, Bonn IMG 5509
The Museum Koenig is Bonn's natural history museum.

The Bundeskunsthalle (full name: Kunst- und Ausstellungshalle der Bundesrepublik Deutschland or Art and Exhibition Hall of the Federal Republic of Germany), focusses on the crossroads of culture, arts, and science. To date, it attracted more than 17 million visitors.[22] One of its main objectives is to show the cultural heritage outside of Germany or Europe.[23] Next to its changing exhibitions, the Bundeskunsthalle regularly hosts concerts, discussion panels, congresses, and lectures.

The Museum Koenig is Bonn's natural history museum. Affiliated with the University of Bonn, it is also a zoological research institution housing the Leibniz-Institut für Biodiversität der Tiere. Politically interesting, it is on the premises of the Museum Koenig where the Parlamentarischer Rat first met.[24] The Deutsches Museum Bonn, affiliated with one of the world's foremost science museums, the Deutsches Museum in Munich, is an interactive science museum focusing on post-war German scientists, engineers, and inventions.[25] Other museums include the Beethoven House, birthplace of Ludwig van Beethoven,[26] the Rheinisches Landesmuseum Bonn (Rhinish Regional Museum Bonn),[27] the Bonn Women's Museum, the Rheinisches Malermuseum and the Arithmeum.

Nature

Siebengebirge schloss drachenburg ds wv 09 2008
Drachenburg Castle in the Siebengebirge south of Bonn.

There are several parks, leisure and protected areas in and around Bonn. The de:Rheinaue is Bonn's most important leisure park, with its role being comparable to what Central Park is for New York. It lies on the banks of the Rhine and is the city's biggest park intra muros.[28] The Rhine promenade and the Alter Zoll (Old Toll Station) are in direct neighbourhood of the city centre and are popular amongst both residents and visitors. The Arboretum Park Härle is an arboretum with specimens dating to back to 1870. The Botanischer Garten (Botanical Garden) is affiliated with the university and it is here where Titan arum set a world record.[29] The natural reserve of Kottenforst is a large area of protected woods on the hills west of the city centre. It is about 40 square kilometres (15 square miles) in area and part of the Rhineland Nature Park (1,045 km2 or 403 sq mi).[30]

In the very south of the city, on the border with Wachtberg and Rhineland-Palatinate, there is an extinct volcano, the Rodderberg, featuring a popular area for hikes. Also south of the city, there is the Siebengebirge which is part of the lower half of the Middle Rhine region. The nearby upper half of the Middle Rhine from Bingen to Koblenz is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with more than 40 castles and fortresses from the Middle Ages and important German vineyards.

Transportation

Air traffic

Named after Konrad Adenauer, the first post-war Chancellor of West Germany, Cologne Bonn Airport is situated 15 kilometres (9.3 miles) north-east from the city centre of Bonn. With around 10.3 million passengers passing through it in 2015, it is the seventh-largest passenger airport in Germany and the third-largest in terms of cargo operations. By traffic units, which combines cargo and passengers, the airport is in fifth position in Germany.[31] As of March 2015, Cologne Bonn Airport had services to 115 passenger destinations in 35 countries.[32] The airport is one of Germany's few 24-hour airports, and is a hub for Eurowings and cargo operators FedEx Express and UPS Airlines.

The federal motorway (Autobahn) A59 connects the airport with the city. Long distance and regional trains to and from the airport stop at Cologne/Bonn Airport station. Other major airports within a one-hour drive by car are Frankurt International Airport and Düsseldorf International Airport.

Rail and bus system

2008-07-28 U-Bahnhof Hauptbahnhof (Bonn)
Bonn Hauptbahnhof, Bonn's busiest railway station, is connected to Bonn's partly underground U-Bahn network.

Bonn's central railway station, Bonn Hauptbahnhof, serves urban (S-Bahn, U-Bahn, sharing the same network with the neighbouring city of Cologne), regional (Regionalbahn), and long distance destinations (ICE) such as Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Zurich, Vienna, Brussels, Amsterdam and Paris. Daily, more than 67,000 people travel via Bonn Hauptbahnhof. In late 2016, around 80 long distance and more than 165 regional trains departed to or from Bonn every day.[33][34] The other major railway station (Siegburg/Bonn) lies on the high-speed rail line between Cologne and Frankfurt.

The bus system of Bonn is composed of roughly 30 lines which operate on a regular basis. During peaks, buses usually run every 5 minutes; off-peak buses run every 20 minutes. Several lines offer night services, especially during the weekends. Bonn is part of the Verkehrsverbund Rhein-Sieg (Rhine-Sieg Transport Association) which is the public transport association covering the area of the Cologne/Bonn region.

Road network

Region Bonn motorways
Road network adjacent to Bonn.

Four German Autobahns run through or are adjacent to Bonn: the A59 (right bank of the Rhine, connecting Bonn with Düsseldorf and Duisburg), the A555 (left bank of the Rhine, connecting Bonn with Cologne), the A562 (connecting the right with the left bank of the Rhine south of Bonn), and the A565 (connecting the A59 and the A555 with the A61 to the southwest). Three Bundesstraßen, which have a general 100 kilometres per hour (62 miles per hour) speed limit in contrast to the Autobahn, connect Bonn to its immediate surroundings (Bundesstraßen B9, B42 and B56).

With Bonn being divided into two parts by the Rhine, three bridges are crucial for inner-city road traffic: the Konrad-Adenauer-Brücke (A562), the Friedrich-Ebert-Brücke (A565), and the Kennedybrücke (B56). In addition, regular ferries operate between Bonn-Mehlem and Königswinter, Bonn-Bad Godesberg and Niederdollendorf, and Graurheindorf and Mondorf.

Port

Located in the northern sub-district of Graurheindorf, the inland harbour of Bonn is used for container traffic as well as oversea transport. The annual turnover amounts to around 500,000 t (490,000 long tons; 550,000 short tons). Regular passenger transport occurs to Cologne and Düsseldorf.

Economy

Bonn - Posttower
Being one of the biggest employers in the region, Deutsche Post DHL have their headquarters in Bonn.

The head offices of Deutsche Telekom, its subsidiary T-Mobile,[35] Deutsche Post, Haribo, German Academic Exchange Service, and SolarWorld are in Bonn.

Education

Geschäftsstelle der Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft in Bonn-Bad Godesberg
Offices of DFG, an important research funding organisation

The Rheinische Friedrich Wilhelms Universität Bonn (University of Bonn) is one of the largest universities in Germany. It is also the location of the German research institute Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) offices and of the German Academic Exchange Service (Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst – DAAD).

Private schools

Demographics

As of 2011, Bonn had a population of 327,913. About 70% of the population was entirely of German origin, while about 100,000 people, equating to roughly 30%, were at least partly of non-German origin. The city is one of the fastest-growing municipalities in Germany and the 18th most populous city in the country. Bonn's population is predicted to surpass the populations of Wuppertal and Bochum before the year 2030.[36]

The following list shows the largest groups of origin of minorites with "migration background" in Bonn as of 31.12.2017.[37]

Rank Nationality Population (31.12.2017)
1  Turkey 8,276
2  Poland 7,352
3  Syria 7,128
4  Morocco 5,721
5 Template:Country data Ex Yugoslavia 4,960
6  Russia 3,741
7  Italy 3,719
8  Iran 3,099
9  Spain 2,819
10  Iraq 2,355
11  Romania 2,244
12  France 2,027
13  China 1,840
14  USA 1,807
15  Afghanistan 1,756
16  Kazakhstan 1,677
17  Tunisia 1,669
18  Greece 1,655
19  Iceland 1,531
20  India 1,455
21  UK 1,274
Bonn DTAG2
Deutsche Telekom head office

Sports

Bonn is home of the Telekom Baskets Bonn, the only basketball club in Germany that owns its arena, the Telekom Dome.[38] The club is a regular participant at international competitions such as the Basketball Champions League.

The city also has an amateur football team Bonner SC which was formed in 1965 through the merger of Bonner FV and Tura Bonn.

The Headquarter of the International Paralympic Committee have since 1999 been located in Bonn.

International relations

Since 1983, the City of Bonn has established friendship relations with the City of Tel Aviv, Israel, and since 1988 Bonn, in former times the residence of the Princes Electors of Cologne, and Potsdam, Germany, the formerly most important residential city of the Prussian rulers, have established a city-to-city partnership.

Central Bonn is surrounded by a number of traditional towns and villages which were independent up to several decades ago. As many of those communities had already established their own contacts and partnerships before the regional and local reorganisation in 1969, the Federal City of Bonn now has a dense network of city district partnerships with European partner towns.

The city district of Bonn is a partner of the English university city of Oxford, England, UK (since 1947), of Budafok, District XXII of Budapest, Hungary (since 1991) and of Opole, Poland (officially since 1997; contacts were established 1954).

The district of Bad Godesberg has established partnerships with Saint-Cloud in France, Frascati in Italy, Windsor and Maidenhead in England, UK and Kortrijk in Belgium; a friendship agreement has been signed with the town of Yalova, Turkey.

The district of Beuel on the right bank of the Rhine and the city district of Hardtberg foster partnerships with towns in France: Mirecourt and Villemomble.

Moreover, the city of Bonn has developed a concept of international co-operation and maintains sustainability oriented project partnerships in addition to traditional city twinning, among others with Minsk in Belarus, Ulaanbaatar in Mongolia, Bukhara in Uzbekistan, Chengdu in China and La Paz in Bolivia.

Twin towns — sister cities

The city of Bonn is twinned with:[39]

Bonn city district has partnerships with:

Bad Godesberg district has partnerships with:[39][43]

The city of Bonn also has project partnerships with:

Notable residents

Up to the 19th century

  • Johann Peter Salomon *? (baptized 20 February 1745), † 25 November 1815 in London, musician
  • Franz Anton Ries, * November 10, 1755 † 1 November 1846 in Bonn, violinist and violin teacher
  • Ludwig van Beethoven, * December 16, 1770 † 26 March 1827 in Vienna, composer
  • Salomon Oppenheim, Jr., * June 19, 1772 † November 8, 1828 in Mainz, banker
  • Peter Joseph Lenné, * September 29, 1789 † 23 January 1866 in Potsdam, gardener and landscape architect
  • Friedrich von Gerolt, * March 5, 1797 † July 27, 1879 in Linz, German diplomat
  • Karl Joseph Simrock * August 28, 1802, † 18 July 1876 in Bonn, writer and specialist in German
  • Wilhelm Neuland, * July 1806 in Bonn, † December, 28, 1889 in Bonn, composer and conductor
  • Johanna Kinkel, * July 8, 1810 † 15 November 1858 in London, composer and writer
  • Moses Hess, * June 21, 1812, † April 6, 1875 in Paris, philosopher and writer
  • Johann Gottfried Kinkel, * August 11, 1815, † 12 November 1882 in Zürich, theologian, writer and politician
  • Alexander Kaufmann, * May 14, 1817; † 1 May 1893 in Wertheim, author and archivist
  • Leopold Kaufmann, * March 13, 1821, † 27 February 1898 in Bonn, mayor
  • Julius von Haast, * May 1, 1822 † 16 August 1887 in Christchurch, New Zealand, professor of geology
  • Dietrich Brandis, * March 31, 1824 † 28 May 1907 in Bonn, botanist
  • Balduin Möllhausen * 27 January 1825, † 28 May 1905 in Berlin, traveler and writer
  • Maurus Wolter, * June 4, 1825 † July 8, 1890 in Beuron, Benedictine, founder and first abbot of the Abbey of Beuron and Beuronese Congregation
  • August Reifferscheid, * October 3, 1835 in Bonn; † 10 November 1887 in Strasbourg, philologist
  • Antonius Maria Bodewig, * November 2, 1839 † January 8, 1915 in Rome, Jesuit missionary and Founder
  • Nathan Zuntz, * October 7, 1847 † 23 March 1920 in Berlin, physicians
  • Alexander Koenig, * February 20, 1858 in St. Petersburg; † July 16, 1940 in Good Blücherhof, Klocksin, Mecklenburg, German zoologist and founder of today's Museum Koenig in Bonn
  • Alfred Philippson * January 1, 1864, † 28 March 1953 in Bonn, geographer
  • Johanna Elberskirchen, * April 11, 1864, † 17 May 1943 in Rüdersdorf, feminist writer and activist
  • Max Alsberg * October 16, 1877, † 10 September 1933, lawyer
  • Kurt Wolff * March 3, 1887, † 21 October 1963, publisher
  • Hans Riegel (senior), * April 3, 1893 in Friesdorf village (now part of Bonn), † 31 March 1945, entrepreneur
  • Eduard Krebsbach, * August 8, 1894 † May 28, 1947 in Landsberg am Lech, SS doctor in Nazi Mauthausen concentration camp executed for war crimes
  • Paul Kemp, * May 20, 1896 in Bad Godesberg (now part of Bonn), † 13 August 1953 in Bonn, actor

20th century

1900–1950

  • Hermann Josef Abs * October 15, 1901, † February 5, 1994 in Bad Soden am Taunus, Board member of the Deutsche Bank
  • Paul Ludwig Landsberg, born December 3, 1901 † April 2, 1944 in Sachsenhausen concentration camp, philosopher
  • Heinrich Lützeler, born January 27, 1902, † 13 June 1988 in Bonn, philosopher, art historian, literary scholar
  • Theodor Schieffer * June 11, 1910 (Bad Godesberg), † April 9, 1992, historian and medievalist
  • Irene Sänger-Bredt born Bredt, born April 24, 1911 † 20 October 1983 in Stuttgart, mathematician and physicist
  • Ernst Friedrich Schumacher, born August 16, 1911 † 4 September 1977 in the train between Geneva and Lausanne, economist
  • Klaus Barbie * October 25, 1913 (Bad Godesberg), † 25 September 1991 in Lyon, the "Butcher of Lyon"
  • Karl-Theodor Molinari, born February 7, 1915 † 11 December 1993 in Dortmund, General and Founding Chairman of the German Armed Forces Association
  • Karlrobert Kreiten, born June 26, 1916 in Bad Godesberg, † September 7, 1943 in Berlin-Plotzensee, pianist
  • Hannjo Hasse, born August 31, 1921 † February 5, 1983 in Falkirk, German actor
  • Walter Gotell, March 15, 1924, actor † 5 May 1997
  • Walter Eschweiler, born September 20, 1935 football referees
  • Alexandra Cordes, born November 16, 1935 † 27 October 1986 in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, writer
  • Joachim Bißmeier, born November 22, 1936 actor
  • Roswitha Esser * born 18 January 1941, canoeist, gold medal winner at the Olympic Games in 1964 and 1968 Sportswoman of the Year 1964
  • Heide Simonis * born July 4, 1943, former Prime Minister of Schleswig-Holstein, since 2005 honorary chairman of UNICEF Germany
  • Paul Alger * born August 13, 1943, football player
  • Johannes Mötsch * July 8, 1949, archivist and historian in Meiningen
  • Klaus Ludwig * born October 5, 1949, race car driver

1951 up to present

References

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  41. ^ "Oxford's International Twin Towns". Oxford City Council. Archived from the original on 2013-08-17. Retrieved 2013-09-03.
  42. ^ "Opole Official Website – Twin Towns". Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Flag of Poland.svg (in English and Polish) © 2007–2009 Urząd Miasta Opola. Retrieved 2009-06-18.
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  45. ^ "Twin towns and Sister cities of Minsk [via WaybackMachine.com]" (in Russian). The department of protocol and international relations of Minsk City Executive Committee. Archived from the original on 2 May 2013. Retrieved 2013-07-21.

External links

Bad Godesberg

Bad Godesberg is a municipal district of Bonn, southern North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. From 1949 to 1999, while Bonn was the capital of West Germany and later Germany, most foreign embassies were in Bad Godesberg. Some buildings are still used as branch offices or consulates.

Bonn Stadtbahn

The Bonn Stadtbahn (English: city rail) is a part of the local public transit system in Bonn and the surrounding Rhein-Sieg area, that also includes the Bonn Straßenbahn. Although with six actual Stadtbahn lines (as well as three tram lines) the network is relatively small, two of Bonn's Stadtbahn lines connect to the much larger Cologne Stadtbahn (and are numbered according to that system, not Bonn's).

The Stadtbahn network comprises 95.84 kilometres (59.55 mi) of route. There are 64 stations and stops in the city of Bonn proper, and another 17 in Siegburg and Bad Honnef. Additionally, 8.72 kilometres (5.42 mi) of the Stadtbahn is located underground, as are 12 of the Stadtbahn stations.

Bonner SC

Bonner SC is a German association football club based in Bonn. The club was formed in 1965 through the merger of Bonner FV and Tura Bonn.

Cologne

Cologne (English: ; German: Köln, pronounced [kœln] (listen), Ripuarian: Kölle [ˈkœlə] (listen)) is the largest city of Germany's most populous federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia, and its 1 million+ (2016) inhabitants make it the fourth most populous city in Germany after Berlin, Hamburg, and Munich. The largest city on the Rhine, it is also the most populous city both of the Rhine-Ruhr Metropolitan Region, which is Germany's largest and one of Europe's major metropolitan areas, and of the Rhineland. Centred on the left bank of the Rhine, Cologne is about 45 kilometres (28 mi) southeast of North Rhine-Westphalia's capital of Düsseldorf and 25 kilometres (16 mi) northwest of Bonn. It is the largest city in the Central Franconian and Ripuarian dialect areas.

The city's famous Cologne Cathedral (Kölner Dom) is the seat of the Catholic Archbishop of Cologne. There are many institutions of higher education in the city, most notably the University of Cologne (Universität zu Köln), one of Europe's oldest and largest universities, the Technical University of Cologne (Technische Hochschule Köln), Germany's largest university of applied sciences, and the German Sport University Cologne (Deutsche Sporthochschule Köln), Germany's only sport university. Cologne Bonn Airport (Flughafen Köln/Bonn) is Germany's seventh-largest airport and lies in the southeast of the city. The main airport for the Rhine-Ruhr region is Düsseldorf Airport.

Cologne was founded and established in Ubii territory in the 1st century AD as the Roman Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium, the first word of which is the origin of its name. An alternative Latin name of the settlement is Augusta Ubiorum, after the Ubii. "Cologne", the French version of the city's name, has become standard in English as well. The city functioned as the capital of the Roman province of Germania Inferior and as the headquarters of the Roman military in the region until occupied by the Franks in 462. During the Middle Ages it flourished on one of the most important major trade routes between east and west in Europe. Cologne was one of the leading members of the Hanseatic League and one of the largest cities north of the Alps in medieval and Renaissance times. Prior to World War II the city had undergone several occupations by the French and also by the British (1918–1926). Cologne was one of the most heavily bombed cities in Germany during World War II, with the Royal Air Force (RAF) dropping 34,711 long tons (35,268 tonnes) of bombs on the city.

The bombing reduced the population by 95%, mainly due to evacuation, and destroyed almost the entire city. With the intention of restoring as many historic buildings as possible, the successful postwar rebuilding has resulted in a very mixed and unique cityscape.

Cologne is a major cultural centre for the Rhineland; it hosts more than 30 museums and hundreds of galleries. Exhibitions range from local ancient Roman archeological sites to contemporary graphics and sculpture. The Cologne Trade Fair hosts a number of trade shows such as Art Cologne, imm Cologne, Gamescom, and the Photokina.

Cologne/Bonn Airport station

Cologne/Bonn Airport (German: Köln/Bonn Flughafen) is a station at Cologne Bonn Airport in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. It was built as part of the Cologne-Frankfurt high-speed railway and opened in June 2004 on an approximately 15 kilometre-long airport loop. It is served by Intercity-Express (ICE), Rhine-Ruhr S-Bahn and regional services.The Cologne Bonn airport was the third German airport to have a connection to the ICE network after Frankfurt Airport and Düsseldorf Airport.

The approximately 420 m-long and 40 m-wide underground station is classified by Deutsche Bahn as a category 3 station. The four platform tracks are located 18 m below the surface.In 2002, the projected construction cost of the station stood at €58.3 million. It was funded by the federal government, the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and the Cologne Bonn Airport. In total, the federal government contributed approximately €255 million to the construction costs of the airport loop and station.

Cologne Bonn Airport

Cologne Bonn Airport (German: Flughafen Köln/Bonn „Konrad Adenauer“, also known as Flughafen Köln-Wahn) (IATA: CGN, ICAO: EDDK) is the international airport of Germany's fourth-largest city Cologne, and also serves Bonn, capital of the former West Germany. With around 12.4 million passengers passing through it in 2017, it is the seventh-largest passenger airport in Germany and the third-largest in terms of cargo operations. By traffic units, which combines cargo and passengers, the airport is in fifth position in Germany. As of March 2015, Cologne Bonn Airport had services to 115 passenger destinations in 35 countries. It is named after Konrad Adenauer, a Cologne native and the first post-war Chancellor of West Germany.

The airport is located in the district of Porz and is surrounded by the Wahner Heide nature reserve. The airport is centrally located in the Cologne Bonn Region 14.8 km (9.2 mi) southeast of Cologne city centre and 16 km (9.9 mi) northeast of Bonn. Cologne Bonn Airport is one of the country's few 24-hour airports and serves as a hub for Eurowings, FedEx Express and UPS Airlines as well as a focus city for several leisure and low-cost airlines. It is also a host of the German and European space agencies DLR and EAC, part of ESA, which train astronauts there for space explorations.

Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals

The Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals -- more commonly abbreviated to just the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) or the Bonn Convention and CMS COP is known as Global Wildlife conference—aims to conserve terrestrial, marine and avian migratory species throughout their range. It is an international treaty, concluded under the aegis of the United Nations Environment Programme, concerned with the conservation of wildlife and habitats on a global scale. Since the Convention's entry into force, its membership has grown steadily to include over 120 Parties from Africa, Central and South America, Asia, Europe and Oceania. The Convention was signed in 1979 in Bad Godesberg, a suburb of Bonn (hence the name), and entered into force in 1983. The depositary is the government of the Federal Republic of Germany.

The CMS is the only global and UN-based intergovernmental organization established exclusively for the conservation and management of terrestrial, aquatic and avian migratory species throughout their range. CMS and its daughter agreements determine policy and provide further guidance on specific issues through their Strategic Plans, Action Plans, resolutions, decisions and guidelines. All maintain on their websites a list of all decisions taken, guidelines issues and Action Plans adopted by the Member States.

Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (pronounced [ˌdɔʏtʃə ˈfɔɐ̯ʃʊŋsɡəˌmaɪnʃaft], DFG [ˌdeːʔɛfˈɡeː]; English: German Research Foundation) is a German research funding organization.

Deutsche Telekom

Deutsche Telekom AG (German pronunciation: [ˌdɔʏtʃə ˈteːləkɔm ʔaːˌɡeː] (listen); short form in writing only: DT) is a German telecommunications company headquartered in Bonn and by revenue the largest telecommunications provider in Europe. Deutsche Telekom was formed in 1996, as the former state-owned monopoly Deutsche Bundespost was privatised. The company operates several subsidiaries worldwide, including the mobile communications brand T-Mobile.

As of February 2019, the German government holds a 14.5% stake in company stock directly, and another 17.4% through the government bank KfW. The company is a component of the Euro Stoxx 50 stock market index.

Deutsche Welle

Deutsche Welle (German pronunciation: [ˈdɔʏtʃə ˈvɛlə]; "German wave" in German) or DW is Germany's public international broadcaster. The service is available in 30 languages. DW's satellite television service consists of channels in English, German, Spanish, and Arabic. While funded by the German government, the work of DW is regulated by the Deutsche Welle Act, meaning that content is always independent of government influence. DW is a member of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU).

DW offers regularly updated articles on its news website and runs its own center for international media development, DW Akademie. The broadcaster's stated goals are to convey Germany as a "liberal, democratic state based on the rule of law", to produce reliable news coverage and to provide access to the German language.DW has been broadcasting since 1953. It is headquartered in Bonn, where its radio programmes are produced. Television broadcasts are produced almost entirely in Berlin. Both locations create content for DW's news website.

As of 2018, around 1,500 employees and 1,500 freelancers from 60 countries work for Deutsche Welle in its offices in Bonn and Berlin. According to DW, its output reaches 157 million people worldwide every week. The Director-General of DW is Peter Limbourg.

Haribo

Haribo ( HARR-i-boh) is a German confectionery company, founded in 1920 by Johannes "Hans" Riegel, Sr. It is headquartered in Bonn and the name is an acronym formed from Hans Riegel, Bonn.

The Landesmuseum Koblenz created a traveling exhibition about the history of Haribo in 2006.

High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina

The High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina, together with the Office of the High Representative (OHR) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, were created in 1995 immediately after the signing of the Dayton Agreement which ended the 1992–95 Bosnian War. The purpose of the High Representative and the OHR is to oversee the civilian implementation of the Dayton agreement. They also serve to represent the countries involved in the implementation of the Dayton Agreement through the Peace Implementation Council (PIC).

To the present, all of the High Representatives named have been from European Union countries, while their principal deputies have been from the United States. The Principal Deputy High Representative serves as International Supervisor for Brčko, representing the international community in the Brčko District.

Johann Martin Augustin Scholz

Johann Martin Augustin Scholz (8 February 1794 – 20 October 1852) was a German Roman Catholic orientalist, biblical scholar and academic theologian. He was a professor at the University of Bonn and travelled extensively throughout Europe and the Near East in order to locate manuscripts of the New Testament.

Köln Hauptbahnhof

Köln Hauptbahnhof (German for Cologne main station) is a railway station in Cologne, Germany. The station is an important local, national and international hub, with many ICE, Thalys and Intercity trains calling there, as well as regional RegionalExpress, RegionalBahn and local S-Bahn trains. EuroNight and DB NachtZug night services also call at the station. It has frequent connections to Frankfurt by way of the Cologne-Frankfurt high-speed rail line, which starts in southern Cologne. On an average day, about 280,000 travellers frequent the station, making it the fifth busiest station in Germany.The station is situated next to Cologne Cathedral.

There is another important station in Cologne, the Köln Messe/Deutz railway station across the river Rhine, just about 400 metres away from Köln Hauptbahnhof. The stations are linked by the Hohenzollern Bridge, a six-track railway bridge with passenger walkways on each side. Frequent local services connect the two stations.

Ludwig van Beethoven

Ludwig van Beethoven ( (listen); German: [ˈluːtvɪç fan ˈbeːthoːfn̩] (listen); baptised 17 December 1770 – 26 March 1827) was a German composer and pianist. A crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in classical music, he remains one of the most recognised and influential of all composers. His best-known compositions include 9 symphonies; 5 piano concertos; 1 violin concerto; 32 piano sonatas; 16 string quartets; a mass, the Missa solemnis; and an opera, Fidelio. His career as a composer is conventionally divided into early, middle, and late periods; the "early" period is typically seen to last until 1802, the "middle" period from 1802 to 1812, and the "late" period from 1812 to his death in 1827.

Beethoven was born in Bonn, then the capital of the Electorate of Cologne and part of the Holy Roman Empire. He displayed his musical talents at an early age and was taught by his father Johann van Beethoven and composer and conductor Christian Gottlob Neefe. At the age of 21 he moved to Vienna, where he began studying composition with Joseph Haydn and gained a reputation as a virtuoso pianist. He lived in Vienna until his death. By his late 20s his hearing began to deteriorate and by the last decade of his life he was almost completely deaf. In 1811 he gave up conducting and performing in public but continued to compose; many of his most admired works come from these last 15 years of his life, commonly known as his "late" period.

Sabriye Tenberken

Sabriye Tenberken (born 1970) is a German socialworker and co-founder of the organisation Braille Without Borders.

Telekom Baskets Bonn

Telekom Baskets Bonn, also known as Baskets Bonn is a German professional basketball club that is based in Bonn, Germany. The club plays in the Basketball Bundesliga, which is the highest level pro basketball league in Germany. The club's sponsor is the German company, Deutsche Telekom, a major telephone and internet company, which also sells mobile phones (T-Mobile) in the United States. The club's home arena is the Telekom Dome.

The Baskets reached the German League Final Four nine times in 17 years of league affiliation, and belong to Germany's most successful teams. Bonn reached the league finals five times, in 1997, 1999, 2001, 2008, and 2009, albeit coming up short on each occasion.

University of Bonn

The University of Bonn (German: Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn) is a public research university located in Bonn, Germany. It was founded in its present form as the Rhein University on 18 October 1818 by Frederick William III, as the linear successor of the Kurkölnische Akademie Bonn (English: Academy of the Prince-elector of Cologne) which was founded in 1777. The University of Bonn offers a large number of undergraduate and graduate programs in a range of subjects and has 544 professors and 32,500 students. Its library holds more than five million volumes.

As of August 2018, among its notable alumni, faculty and researchers are 10 Nobel Laureates, 4 Fields Medalists, twelve Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize winners as well as August Kekulé, Friedrich Nietzsche, Heinrich Heine, Prince Albert, Pope Benedict XVI, Frederick III, Max Ernst, Konrad Adenauer, and Joseph Schumpeter.

The Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2016 and the Academic Ranking of World Universities 2015 ranked the University of Bonn as one of the 100 best universities in the world.

West Germany

West Germany is the common English name for the Federal Republic of Germany (German: Bundesrepublik Deutschland) in the period between its creation on 23 May 1949 and German reunification on 3 October 1990. During this Cold War era, NATO-aligned West Germany and Warsaw Pact-aligned East Germany were divided by the Inner German border. After 1961 West Berlin was physically separated from East Berlin as well as from East Germany by the Berlin Wall. This situation ended when East Germany was dissolved and split into five states, which then joined the ten states of the Federal Republic of Germany along with the reunified city-state of Berlin. With the reunification of West and East Germany, the Federal Republic of Germany, enlarged now to sixteen states, became known simply as "Germany". This period is referred to as the Bonn Republic (Bonner Republik) by historians, alluding to the interwar Weimar Republic and the post-reunification Berlin Republic.The Federal Republic of Germany was established from eleven states formed in the three Allied Zones of occupation held by the United States, the United Kingdom and France (the "Western Zones"). US and British forces remained in the country throughout the Cold War. Its population grew from roughly 51 million in 1950 to more than 63 million in 1990. The city of Bonn was its (provisional) capital. The fourth Allied occupation zone (the East Zone, or Ostzone) was held by the Soviet Union, bounded to the east by the Oder-Neisse line; and in 1949 this became the socialist German Democratic Republic (abbreviated GDR; in German Deutsche Demokratische Republik or DDR) with its de facto capital in East Berlin. The former parts of Germany east of the Oder-Neisse were separated from 'Germany as a whole' by the Potsdam Agreement of 1945, and then annexed by Poland and the Soviet Union. As a result, West Germany had a territory about half the size of the interwar period democratic Weimar Republic.

At the onset of the Cold War, Europe was divided among the Western and Eastern blocs. Germany was de facto divided into two countries and two special territories, the Saarland and divided Berlin. Initially the Federal Republic of Germany claimed an exclusive mandate for all of Germany, considering itself to be the democratically reorganised continuation of the 1871–1945 German Reich. It took the line that the GDR was an illegally constituted puppet state. Though the GDR did hold regular elections, these were not free and fair. From the West German perspective, the GDR was therefore illegitimate.

Three southwestern states of West Germany merged to form Baden-Württemberg in 1952, and the Saarland joined the Federal Republic of Germany in 1957. In addition to the resulting ten states, West Berlin was considered an unofficial de facto 11th state. While legally not part of the Federal Republic of Germany, as Berlin was under the control of the Allied Control Council, West Berlin aligned itself politically with West Germany and was directly or indirectly represented in its federal institutions.

Relations with the Soviet bloc improved during the era of "Neue Ostpolitik" around 1970, West Germany then adopting the principle that the GDR and the Federal Republic were "two German states within one German nation". Claims to an exclusive mandate were formally relinquished, West Germany accepting that, within its own boundaries, the GDR represented its population as a de jure German state outside the Federal Republic. In addition, although the Federal Republic still did not recognise the GDR as being fully a sovereign state in international law, it nevertheless accepted that within the forum of international law East Germany was an independent sovereign state with which the Federal Republic could enter into binding international agreements. But in respect of legality within its own boundaries, West Germany continued to maintain that there remained a single (but dormant) overall German nation, that could only be represented de jure by the Federal Republic. From 1973 onward, East Germany maintained the existence of two German sovereign states, with West Germany being both de facto and de jure a foreign country. The Federal Republic and the GDR agreed that neither of them could speak in the name of the other.

The foundation for the influential position held by Germany today was laid during the Wirtschaftswunder (economic miracle) of the 1950s when West Germany rose from the enormous destruction wrought by World War II to become the world's third-largest economy. The first chancellor Konrad Adenauer, who remained in office until 1963, had worked for a full alignment with NATO rather than neutrality. He not only secured a membership in NATO but was also a proponent of agreements that developed into the present-day European Union. When the G6 was established in 1975, there was no question whether the Federal Republic of Germany would be a member as well.

Following the collapse of communism in Central and Eastern Europe in 1989, symbolised by the opening of the Berlin Wall, there was a rapid move towards German reunification. East Germany voted to dissolve itself and accede to the Federal Republic in 1990. Its five post-war states (Länder) were reconstituted along with the reunited Berlin, which ended its special status and formed an additional Land. They formally joined the Federal Republic on 3 October 1990, raising the number of states from 10 to 16, ending the division of Germany. The expanded Federal Republic retained West Germany's political culture and continued its existing memberships in international organisations, as well as its Western foreign policy alignment and affiliation to Western alliances like UN, NATO, OECD and the European Union.

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