Mannheim is a city in the southwestern part of Germany, the third-largest in the German state of Baden-Württemberg after Stuttgart and Karlsruhe with a 2015 population of approximately 305,000 inhabitants. The city is at the centre of the larger densely populated Rhine-Neckar Metropolitan Region which has a population of 2,400,000 and is Germany’s eighth-largest metropolitan region.
Mannheim is located at the confluence of the Rhine and the Neckar in the northwestern corner of Baden-Württemberg. The Rhine separates Mannheim from the city of Ludwigshafen, just to the west of it in Rhineland-Palatinate, and the border of Baden-Württemberg with Hesse is just to the north. Mannheim is downstream along the Neckar from the city of Heidelberg.
Mannheim is unusual among German cities in that its streets and avenues are laid out in a grid pattern, leading to its nickname “die Quadratestadt” (“The City of Squares”). The eighteenth century Mannheim Palace, former home of the Prince-elector of the Palatinate, now houses the University of Mannheim.
The city is home to major corporations including Daimler, John Deere, Caterpillar, ABB, Fuchs Petrolub, IBM, Roche, Reckitt Benckiser, Unilever, Phoenix Group, Siemens, and several other well-known companies. In addition, Mannheim’s SAP Arena is not only the home of the German ice hockey record champions the Adler Mannheim, but also the well-known handball team, the Rhein-Neckar Löwen. According to the Forbes magazine, Mannheim is known for its exceptional inventive power and was ranked 11th among the Top 15 of the most inventive cities worldwide.The New Economy Magazine elected Mannheim under the 20 cities that best represent the world of tomorrow emphasizing Mannheim’s positive economic and innovative environment. Since 2014, Mannheim has been a member of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network and holds the title of “UNESCO City of Music”. Mannheim is a Smart City; the city’s electrical grid is installed with a Power-line communication network.
The city’s tourism slogan is “Leben. Im Quadrat.” (Life. Squared.). The civic symbol of Mannheim is der Wasserturm, a Romanesque water tower completed in 1886 that rises to 60 metres (200 feet) above the highest point of the art nouveau area Friedrichsplatz. Mannheim is the starting and finishing point of the Bertha Benz Memorial Route.
The National Theatre Mannheim was founded in 1779 and is the oldest “Stage” in Germany. In 1782 the premier of Die Räuber, written by Friedrich Schiller, was shown.
Recently, more smaller stages have opened, such as the Oststadt-Theater, the TIG7 (Theater im Quadrat G7), the Theater Oliv, the Freilichtbühne, the Theater31, the Theater ImPuls, the Theater Felina-Areal, the Mannheimer Puppenspiele, the Kleinkunstbühne Klapsmühl’, Schatzkistl, and zeitraumexit.
The University of Mannheim is one of Germany’s younger universities. Although founded in 1967, it has its origins in the 1763-established Palatine Academy of Sciences and the former Handelshochschule. Situated in Mannheim Palace, it is Germany’s leading university in business and economics and attracts students from around the world. Described by “Die Zeit” magazine as the ‘Harvard of Germany’ it is seen as the alma mater of German businessmen and women.
The university town also houses one of the medical schools of Heidelberg University,the Hochschule Mannheim, a branch of the Duale Hochschule of the State of Baden-Württemberg and several musi-cal and theatrical academies, including the Pop Academy Mannheim, the Musikhochschule and the Theaterakademie. These institutions draw a large and diverse student body.
Dependents of U.S. military personnel attended Mannheim Elementary School until it closed in June 2012. In the 1980s the school had 2,200 students.
The successor to the Karl Benz automobile manufacturing companies begun in Mannheim, Daimler AG, has had a large presence in Mannheim. Today, diesel engines and buses are assembled there. The Swiss Hoffmann–La Roche Diagnostic group (formerly known as Boehringer Mannheim) has its division headquarters in Mannheim. Additionally, the city also hosts large factories and office of ABB Alstom, BASF (Ludwigshafen), Bilfinger Berger, Bombardier, Fuchs Petrolub AG, John Deere, Siemens, SCA, Südzucker, and other companies.
Local public transport in Mannheim includes the RheinNeckar S-Bahn, eleven tram lines, and numer-ous bus lines operated by Rhein-Neckar-Verkehr (Rhine-Neckar transport) (RNV).