Leipzig‘s history in the last 30 years has been breathtaking.
Until 1989 and far beyond, Leipzig suffered the consequences of the disastrous policies of the former GDR. The city was grey, houses and streets were crumbling, industry was uncompetitive, and Leipzig‘s surrounding countryside had been devastated by huge open-pit lignite mines that kept encroaching on the city.
The Peaceful Revolution of 1989, which ultimately brought down the Berlin Wall and communist dictatorships across Europe, began in Leipzig. The city‘s inhabitants provided the heart and engine for the epochal changes in Europe. Leipzig paved the way for a united Germany in Europe.
After the fall of the Berlin Wall, Leipzig‘s population dropped to 437,000 in the mid-1990s. The city was shrinking. By implementing strategic urban development policies, Leipzig has achieved a real turnaround in the last 20 years. Today, more than 605,000 people live in Leipzig again. The city is lively, culturally diverse, economically successful, green and surrounded by a landscape of rivers and lakes. Today, 2.5 million people live in the Leipzig metropolitan region.
“Leipzig grows sustainably!“ is the central goal of the municipal urban development policy. The policies of the Leipzig urban development concept with their focus on quality of life, social stability, competitiveness and internationality move within this framework.
Leipzig is rated as the most liveable city in Germany by the GfK marketing research institution, and has the second-best future prospects of all cities in Germany according to the Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI).
However, the rapid growth of the city has consequences that are felt by the people of the city on a daily basis. The streets are more crowded, open spaces are disappearing. Years of growth have led to a signiﬁcant increase in private motorised vehicle trafﬁc with 100,000 people commuting into and out of the city every day.