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Urban districts of Germany

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In Germany an Urban District (German: Kreisfreie Stadt or Stadtkreis)[1] is a large town or city that is responsible for its own local government. Germany is divided into 429 districts. 313 are rural districts (Landkreise, see List of German rural districts) and 116 urban districts (Kreisfreie Städte / Stadtkreise)[1] which are listed below.

It is not part of a rural district, or county (German: Kreis or Landkreis).

In some states, there is another level of government, the Regierungsbezirk or governmental district. Several urban and rural districts are joined together to make a regierungsbezirk, which does some of their jobs, especially things in land-use planning which can affect several districts.

They are the equivalent of an independent city in the United States or unitary authority in the United Kingdom.

List by stateEdit








Lower SaxonyEdit

¹ following the "Göttingen Law" of January 1 1964, the town of Göttingen is incorporated into the district (Landkreis) of Göttingen, but the rules on urban districts still apply, as long as no other rules exist.
² following the "Law on the region of Hannover", Hannover counts since November 1 2001 as an urban district as long as no other rules apply.

Mecklenburg-Western PomeraniaEdit

North Rhine-WestphaliaEdit



There are no longer any urban districts. The town of Saarbrücken used to be an urban district but became incorporated into the Saarbrücken Town Federation on January 1 1974.


1The urban districts of Görlitz, Hoyerswerda, Plauen und Zwickau will lose their status as „kreisfreie Stadt“ probably on 1st July 2008 in a reform of Saxony's districts.




Related pagesEdit


  1. 1.0 1.1 Last one only in Baden-Württemberg.