City Hall
City Hall
Coat of arms of Krefeld
Krefeld is located in Germany
Coordinates 51°20′0″N 6°34′0″E / 51.333333°N 6.566667°E / 51.333333; 6.566667Coordinates: 51°20′0″N 6°34′0″E / 51.333333°N 6.566667°E / 51.333333; 6.566667
Country Germany
State North Rhine-Westphalia
Admin. region Düsseldorf
District Urban district
Lord Mayor Gregor Kathstede (CDU)
Basic statistics
Area 137.68 km2 (53.16 sq mi)
Elevation 39 m  (128 ft)
Population 235,076 (31 December 2010)[1]
 - Density 1,707 /km2 (4,422 /sq mi)
Other information
Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Licence plate KR
Postal codes 47701-47839
Area code 02151
Castle Linn at Night

Krefeld (German pronunciation: [ˈkʁeːfɛlt]), also known as Crefeld until 1929, is a city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is located northwest of Düsseldorf, its centre lying just a few kilometres to the west of the River Rhine; the borough of Uerdingen is situated directly on the Rhine. Krefeld is accessed by the autobahns A57 (Cologne - Nijmegen) and the A44 (Aachen - Düsseldorf - Dortmund - Kassel)

Krefeld is also called the "Velvet and Silk City".

Since 1962, the city hosted an "honors program in foreign language (German) studies" for high school students from Indiana/USA. The program annually places approximately thirty carefully selected high school juniors with families in and around Krefeld for intensive German language training.[2]

Krefeld's residents speak Hochdeutsch, the standard German taught to all people in Germany. However, the native dialect is a Low German variety, sometimes locally called Krefelder Plattdeutsch, Krieewelsch Platt, Plattdeutsch, or sometimes simply Platt. The Uerdingen line isogloss, separating general dialectical areas in Germany and neighbouring Germanic-speaking countries, runs through and is named after Krefeld's Uerdingen district, originally an independent municipality. And also, Class 380 are built here.[3]



The origins of the town were in Roman times, when the legions founded the military camp of Gelduba (today the borough of Gellep). Krefeld itself was first mentioned in 1105 under the name of Krinvelde. Uerdingen was originally an independent town east of Krefeld, founded in 1255. In medieval times it was larger and more important than Krefeld.

The growth of the town began in the 17th century, when Krefeld was one of few towns spared the horrors of the Thirty Years' War. Because the town was quickly overpopulated, in 1683 a group of thirteen families (Mennonites) left Krefeld, crossed the Atlantic and founded the settlement of Germantown (now incorporated in Philadelphia), thus beginning the Pennsylvania German ethnic identity. The town of Uerdingen was less fortunate; it was completely destroyed in the Thirty Years' War by troops from Hesse and almost ceased to exist.

After the 1702 death of William III of Orange, Krefeld passed to the Kingdom of Prussia. The Battle of Krefeld occurred nearby in 1758 during the Seven Years' War. Krefeld and Uerdingen were included within the Prussian Province of Jülich-Cleves-Berg in 1815 (after 1822 the Rhine Province. In 1872 Krefeld became an independent city within Rhenish Prussia. In 1918 it became the base of the Belgian Army during the occupation of the Rhineland. In 1929 Krefeld and Uerdingen merged to form Krefeld-Uerdingen; in 1940 the name was shortened to simply Krefeld. The town became part of the new state of North Rhine-Westphalia after World War II.

Points of interest

  • Castle of Linn
  • Botanischer Garten Krefeld, a municipal botanical garden
  • Lange and Esters Houses, a couple of neighbouring houses by early Mies van der Rohe, nowadays serving as local contemporary art museum venues.[4]
  • Zoo Krefeld


There are a number of districts in Krefeld. Each has a municipal representative, with representatives chosen by local elections. The districts are:

  • Benrad-Nord
  • Benrad-Süd
  • Bockum, pop: about 21.903, elevation: 35 m, postal code: 47800 (old: 4150 Krefeld 1)
  • Cracau
  • Dießem/Lehmheide
  • Fischeln
    • Königshof, a part of Fischeln
  • Forstwald
  • Gartenstadt
  • Gellep-Stratum
  • Hüls
  • Hülser Berg
  • Inrath/Kliedbruch
  • Kempener Feld/Baackeshof
  • Linn
Linn, with its own history reaching to between 1090 and 1120, was situated on the banks of the Rhine. There is in Linn a park built around a Wasserburg, a castle built at the water's edge, and with a water-filled moat. The Burg Linn, as the castle is known, has been preserved for the city's residents as a park and museum.[5]
  • Oppum
  • Stadtmitte
  • Traar, pop: about 5,000, postal code: 47802
  • Uerdingen, pop: about 18,507, elevation: 31 m, postal code: 47829
  • Verberg


Here are the old cities and places that were incorporated into Krefeld:

  • 1901: Linn (Stadtrecht since 1314)
  • 1907: Bockum, Verberg und Oppum (all mayoralty Bockum)
  • 1929:
    • Krefeld became an independent city
    • Uerdingen, Krefeld (received municipal law in 1255/1344, added Hohenbudberg in today's Duisburg district Friemersheim)
    • Fischeln, Krefeld district
    • Traar, Krefeld district
    • Gellep and Stratum (in Lank), Krefeld district
    • Forstwald (Vorst), Krefeld district
    • Benrad und Hülserberg (Hüls), Kempen
  • 1975: Locality of Hüls from Kempen (since 1970 integrated and belonged since 1929 to the Kempen-Krefeld district; in 1936 Orbroich had been independent)

Historical population of Krefeld

Year Population
1604 350
1722 1,499
1787 7,896
1830 18,511
1871 57,105
1875 ¹ 62,905
1880 73,872
1 December 1890 ¹ 105,376
2 December 1895 ¹ 107,245
1 December 1900 ¹ 106,928
1 December 1905 ¹ 110,344
1 December 1910 ¹ 129,406
8 October 1919 ¹ 124,325
Year Population
16 June 1925 ¹ 131,098
16 June 1933 ¹ 165,305
17 May 1939 ¹ 170,968
13 September 1950 ¹ 171,875
6 June 1961 ¹ 213,104
31 December 1970 222,700
30 June 1975 230,500
30 June 1980 223,400
30 June 1985 217,000
1 January 1989 235,423
30 June 1997 246,800
31 December 2003 238,565
31 December 2007 240,548

¹ Census data

Mayors of Krefeld from 1848

  • 1848 - 1872: Ludwig Heinrich Ondereyck
  • 1872 - 1881: Friedrich Christian Roos
  • 1882 - 1903: Ernst Küper
  • 1903 - 1905: Wilhelm Hammerschmidt
  • 1905 - 1911: Adalbert Oehler
  • 1911 - 1930: Johannes Johansen
  • 1945 - 1946: Johannes Stepkes
  • 1946 - 1947: Wilhelm Warsch
  • 1947 - 1949: Hermann Passen
  • 1949 - 1951: Hanns Müller (FDP)
  • 1951 - 1956: Johannes Hauser (CDU)
  • 1956 - 1961: Josef Hellenbrock (SPD)
  • 1961 - 1968: Herbert van Hüllen (CDU)
  • 1968 - 1982: Hansheinz Hauser (CDU)
  • 1982 - 1989: Dieter Pützhofen, first term in office (CDU)
  • 1989 - 1994: Willi Wahl (SPD)
  • 1994 - 2004: Dieter Pützhofen, second term in office (CDU)
  • 2004–present: Gregor Kathstede (CDU)

City counsellors 1946 until 1999

  • 1946 - 1949: Johan Stepkes
  • 1949 - 1964: Bernhard Heun
  • 1964 - 1986: Hermann Steffens
  • 1986 - 1988: Alfred Dahlmann
  • 1988 - 1999: Heinz-Josef Vogt


Krefeld is connected to the Deutsche Bahn network with several stations, including its main station, Krefeld Hauptbahnhof. They are served only by Regional-Express and Regionalbahn trains. The Düsseldorf-based Rheinbahn operates a Stadtbahn service to the centrally located Rheinstraße stop. This line was the first electric inter-city rail line in Europe, established in 1898, and commonly called the K-Bahn because of the letter "K" used to denote the trains to Krefeld. Nowadays, in the VRR notation, it is called U76, with the morning express trains numbered as U70, the line number there being of a red colour, instead of the usual blue used for U-Bahn lines. The term K-Bahn, however, prevails in common usage.

The city of Krefeld itself operates four tramway and several bus lines under the umbrella of SWK Mobil, a city-owned company. Since 2010 19 of the oldest trams of the type DUEWAG GT8 were replaced by modern barrier-free trams of the type Bombardier Flexity Outlook. SWK Mobil owns an option to buy another 19 trams of the same type to replace the last 19 DUEWAG M8 trams. The whole tram-fleet will then be barrier-free. Next to that the city plans to extend the line 044 in Krefeld-Hüls to connect the northern district of Hüls with the Krefeld downtown area in.


The headquarters of Fressnapf, a pet food retailer franchise company, are situated in Krefeld.

Sister Cities

Country City County / District / Region / State Date
Netherlands Netherlands Venlo.svg Venlo Venlo Netherlands.svg Venlo 1964
England England ArmsLeicesterCityCouncil.png Leicester County Flag of Leicestershire.png Leicestershire 1969
France France Blason ville fr Dunkerque (Nord).svg Dunkirk Blason Nord-Pas-De-Calais.svg Nord 1974
Netherlands Netherlands Leiden flag.svg Leiden Flag Zuid-Holland.svg South Holland 1974
United States United States Charlotteflag.png Charlotte Flag of North Carolina.svg North Carolina 1986
Germany Germany Wappen Beeskow.png Beeskow Flag of Brandenburg.svg Brandenburg 1990
Russia Russia Flag of Ulyanovsk.svg Ulyanovsk Flag of Ulyanovsk Oblast.png Ulyanovsk Oblast 1993
Turkey Turkey Kayseri Kayseri Province 2009

Notable natives


Writers, poets and journalists:

  • Kurt Feltz (14 April 1910 - 3 August, 1982 in Majorca) - poet
  • Werner Ross (1912 in Uerdingen - 2002), German writer
  • Otto Brües (1 May 1897 - 18 April 1967) - a journalist


  • Blind Guardian, popular German heavy metal
  • Everon, German progressive metal
  • Ralf Hütter (20 August 1946), Lead Singer of Electronic Music Pioneers Kraftwerk
  • Aquagen, popular German trance and techno artists
  • Heinrich Band (1821–1860)
  • Andrea Berg, popular German singer
  • Cosmic Gate, popular German trance duo



  • Felix Kracht (1912–2002), aerospace engineer, an Airbus pioneer and former Senior Vice President
  • Werner Voss (13 April 1897 - 23 September 1917), German World War I aviator
  • Emil Schäfer (17 December 1891 – 5 June 1917), German World War I aviator


  • Martin Hyun, German and U.S. hockey player
  • Frank Schwinghammer a German and Canadian hockey player.


External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • KREFELD — KREFELD, city in N. Rhine Westphalia, Germany. The first Jew living in Krefeld was mentioned in 1617, and in 1728 there were five Jewish families settled in the town. By Prussian royal decree (1743), the city council refused admittance to Jews,… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Krefeld — (Crefeld, hierzu der Stadtplan, mit Registerblatt), Stadt (Stadtkreis) im preuß. Regbez. Düsseldorf, links am Rhein, 38 m ü. M., ist regelmäßig gebaut, hat mehrere große Plätze, darunter der Friedrichsplatz mit dem Krieger und der Bismarckplatz… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Krefeld — Krefeld, 1) Kreis des Regierungsbezirks Düsseldorf der preußischen Rheinprovinz; 34/5 QM., 62,000 Ew.; 2) Kreisstadt darin, 1/2 Meile links vom Rhein, an der Aachen Gladbach Krefeld Ruhrorter Eisenbahn, die sich hier auch nach Neuß u. Düsseldorf… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Krefeld — Krefeld, Stadtkreis und Kreisstadt im preuß. Reg. Bez. Düsseldorf, 7 km vom Rhein, (1900) mit Linn 109.084 E. (22.199 Evangelische, 1822 Israeliten), (1905) 110.347 E., Amtsgericht, Handelskammer, Reichsbankstelle, königl. Lehranstalt für… …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Krefeld — Krefeld, preuß. Stadt im Reg. Bez. Düsseldorf, an der Aachen Düsseldorf Ruhrorter Eisenbahn, mit 45000 E., weltbekannt durch großartige Fabrikation, besonders von Seide , Sammt und Wollestoffen …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • Krefeld — Krefeld, denominada la “ciudad de seda”, se encuentra en Renania del Norte Westfalia. Desde el siglo XVII se desarrolo un intesivo comercio con sedas provenientes de China. En 1683 tras la Guerra de los Siete Años, parte de sus pobladores… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Krefeld — [krā′felt΄] city in W Germany, on the Rhine, in the state of North Rhine Westphalia: pop. 250,000 …   English World dictionary

  • Krefeld — Wappen Deutschlandkarte …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Krefeld — Krëfel Krefeld L hôtel de ville de la commune …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Krefeld — Kre|feld: Stadt in Nordrhein Westfalen. * * * Krefeld,   kreisfreie Stadt in Nordrhein Westfalen, in der Niederrheinischen Bucht, 38 m über dem Meeresspiegel, 241 800 Einwohner; wirtschaftlicher und kultureller Mittelpunkt des linken… …   Universal-Lexikon

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