Ruhr Metropolis

Metropole Ruhr
Flag of Ruhr Metropolis
Official seal of Ruhr Metropolis
Map of the Ruhr metropolitan region within Germany
Map of the Ruhr metropolitan region within Germany
Coordinates: 51°30′N 7°30′E / 51°30′N 7°30′E / 51.500; 7.500North Rhine-Westphalia
Largest cities
 • BodyRegionalverband Ruhr
 • Metro
4,435 km2 (1,712 sq mi)
Highest elevation
441 m (1,447 ft)
Lowest elevation
13 m (43 ft)
 • Metro
 • Metro density1,646/km2 (4,260/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
Nominal136 billion[1]

The Ruhr (German: Ruhrgebiet, pronounced [ˈʁuːɐ̯ɡəˌbiːt] (About this soundlisten))[3] is a polycentric urban area in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany.[a] With a population density of 2,800/km2 and a population of over 5 million (2017),[4] it is the largest urban area in Germany and the third-largest in the European Union.[5] It consists of several large cities bordered by the rivers Ruhr to the south, Rhine to the west, and Lippe to the north. In the southwest it borders the Bergisches Land. It is considered part of the larger Rhine-Ruhr metropolitan region of more than 10 million people, which is among the largest in Europe.

The Ruhr cities are, from west to east: Duisburg, Oberhausen, Bottrop, Mülheim an der Ruhr, Essen, Gelsenkirchen, Bochum, Herne, Hagen, Dortmund, Hamm and the rural districts of Wesel, Recklinghausen, Unna and Ennepe-Ruhr-Kreis. The most populous cities are Dortmund (with a population of approximately 600,000), Essen (about 590,000) and Duisburg (about 500,000).

In the Middle Ages, the Hellweg was an important trade route from the region of the lower Rhine to the mountains of the Teutoburg Forest. The most important towns of the region from Duisburg to the imperial city of Dortmund were concentrated along the Hellweg from the Rhineland to Westphalia. Since the 19th century, these cities have grown together into a large complex with a vast industrial landscape, inhabited by some 7.3 million people (including Düsseldorf and Wuppertal, large cities that are nearby but officially not part of the Ruhr area).

The Ruhr area has no administrative center; each city in the area has its own administration, although there exists the supracommunal "Regionalverband Ruhr" institution in Essen. For 2010, the Ruhr region was one of the European Capitals of Culture.[citation needed][6]


Map of the Ruhr

The urban landscape of the Ruhr extends from the Lower Rhine Basin east to the Westphalian Plain and south to the hills of the Rhenish Massif. Through the centre of the Ruhr runs a segment of the loess belt that extends across Germany from west to east. Historically, this loess belt has underlain some of Germany's richest agricultural regions.

Geologically, the region is defined by coal-bearing layers from the upper Carboniferous period. The coal seams reach the surface in a strip along the river Ruhr and dip downward from the river to the north. Beneath the Lippe, the coal seams lie at a depth of 600 to 800 metres (2,000 to 2,600 feet). The thickness of the coal layers ranges from one to three metres (three to ten feet). This geological feature played a decisive role in the development of coal mining in the Ruhr.

According to the Regionalverband Ruhr (RVR, Ruhr Regional Association), 37.6% of the region's area is built up. A total of 40.7% of the region's land remains in agricultural use. Forests account for 17.6%, and bodies of water and other types of land use occupy the rest. The inclusion of four mainly rural districts in the otherwise mainly industrial Ruhr helps to explain the large proportion of agricultural and forested land. In addition, the city boroughs of the Ruhr region have outlying districts with a rural character.

Seen on a map, the Ruhr could be considered a single city, since—at least in the north–south dimension—there are no visible breaks between the individual city boroughs. Thus the Ruhr is described as a polycentric urban area, which shares a similar history of urban and economic development.

Because of its history, the Ruhr is structured differently from monocentric urban regions such as Berlin and London, which developed through the rapid merger of smaller towns and villages with a growing central city. Instead, the individual city boroughs and urban districts of the Ruhr grew independently of one another during the Industrial Revolution. The population density of the central Ruhr is about 2,100 inhabitants per square kilometre (about 5,400 per square mile)—low compared to other German cities.

Between the constituent urban areas are relatively open suburbs and some open land with agricultural fields. In some places, the borders between cities in the central Ruhr are unrecognizable due to continuous development across them.

Replanting of brownfield land has created new parks and recreation areas. The Emscher Landschaftspark (Emscher Landscape Park) lies along the river Emscher, formerly virtually an open sewer, parts of which have undergone natural restoration. This park connects strips of parkland running from north to south, which were developed through regional planning in the 1920s, to form a green belt between the Ruhr cities from east to west.

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Ruhrgebied
Alemannisch: Ruhrgebiet
العربية: حوض الرور
беларуская: Рурская вобласць
български: Рурска област
brezhoneg: Ruhr (takad)
čeština: Porúří
Cymraeg: Ardal y Ruhr
Deutsch: Ruhrgebiet
Esperanto: Ruhr-regiono
euskara: Ruhr
فارسی: منطقه رور
français: Ruhr (région)
Frysk: Ruhrgebiet
한국어: 루르 지방
հայերեն: Ռուր
हिन्दी: रूर
Bahasa Indonesia: Ruhr
interlingua: Region Ruhr
עברית: חבל הרוהר
Latina: Regio Rurana
lietuvių: Rūro sritis
lumbaart: Ruhr (region)
magyar: Ruhr-vidék
македонски: Рур
मराठी: रूर
მარგალური: რურიშ რეგიონი
مصرى: رور
Bahasa Melayu: Ruhr
မြန်မာဘာသာ: ရူးဝါးနယ်
Nederlands: Ruhrgebied
日本語: ルール地方
norsk nynorsk: Ruhrområdet
ਪੰਜਾਬੀ: ਰੂਆ
português: Vale do Ruhr
Ripoarisch: Ruhrpott
română: Regiunea Ruhr
Scots: Ruhr
Seeltersk: Ruhrgebiet
Simple English: Ruhr Area
سنڌي: رھر
slovenčina: Porúrie
slovenščina: Porurje
српски / srpski: Рурска област
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Ruhr
svenska: Ruhrområdet
தமிழ்: ரூர்
Türkçe: Ruhr bölgesi
українська: Рурський регіон
اردو: رور
Tiếng Việt: Ruhr
中文: 鲁尔区