Affoltern district

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Affoltern district
Affoltern district
Basic data
Country: SwitzerlandSwitzerland Switzerland
Canton : Canton ZurichCanton Zurich Zurich (ZH)
Main town : Affoltern am Albis
FSO number : 0101
Area : 113.03  km²
Height range : 380–915 m above sea level M.
Residents: 54,619 (December 31, 2018)
Population density : 483 inhabitants per km²
Map of Affoltern District

The Affoltern district is a district in the southwest of the Swiss canton of Zurich . It lies between the Albis chain and the Reuss and borders on the canton of Aargau in the west and northwest and on the canton of Zug in the south .

The district is identical to the Knonaueramt (also Knonauer Amt ) region and is popularly called Säuliamt . The name Zürcher Freiamt , which was also in use in earlier centuries, is virtually unknown today.


With 54'619 inhabitants (31 December 2018) of the District Affoltern belongs terms of population to big Switzerland (rank 54 out of 148). In terms of area , it is small (rank 104). The population density per square kilometer is high.

Political communities

The Affoltern district comprises 14 communities. Most of the municipalities belong to the Zurich agglomeration . Nevertheless, the Knonaueramt - especially the southern part - is still considered a largely rural region in the canton of Zurich.

Political communities in the Affoltern district (Canton of Zurich)
coat of arms Name of the parish Postcode Population
(December 31, 2018)
Area in km² Inhabitant
per km²
Aeugst am Albis
Aeugst am Albis 8914 1982 7.91 251
Affoltern am Albis
Affoltern am Albis 8910 12,229 10.59 1155
Bonstetten 8906 5548 7.43 747
Hausen am Albis
Hausen am Albis 8915 3701 13.60 272
Hedingen 8908 3734 6.53 572
Kappel am Albis
Kappel am Albis 8926 1157 7.92 146
Knonau 8934 2373 6.47 367
Maschwanden 8933 656 4.69 6565
Mettmenstetten 8932 5094 13.03 391
Obfelden 8912 5599 7.54 743
Ottenbach 8913 2555 5.02 509
Rifferswil 8911 1123 6.51 173
Stallikon 8143 3680 12.02 306
Wettswil on the Albis 8907 5188 3.77 1376
Total (14) 54,619 113.03 483

Changes in the community

coat of arms

Coat of arms of the Affoltern district
Blazon : « A black wall anchor cross in gold. »
Justification of the coat of arms: The Affoltern district is the only district in the canton of Zurich to have a coat of arms that it took over from the former Landvogtei Knonau. It goes back to the coat of arms of the Barons von Eschenbach .


Localities in the district of Affoltern (Canton of Zurich)
Postcode Locality local community
8914 Aeugstertal Aeugst am Albis
Müliberg Aeugst am Albis
Habersaat Aeugst am Albis
Wengi Aeugst am Albis
8909 Twin icon Affoltern am Albis
Schachen Bonstetten
8925 Ebertswil Hausen am Albis
Hot Hausen am Albis
Hinteralbis Hausen am Albis
Hirzwangen Hausen am Albis
Husertal Hausen am Albis
Middle Albis Hausen am Albis
Oberalbis Hausen am Albis
Schweikhof Hausen am Albis
Tüfenbach Hausen am Albis
Türlen Hausen am Albis
Vollenweid Hausen am Albis
8926 Main icon Kappel am Albis
8926 Uerzlikon Kappel am Albis
Baaregg Knonau
Hinteruttenberg Knonau
Vorderuttenberg Knonau
Roof louvers Mettmenstetten
Eigi Mettmenstetten
Large wood Mettmenstetten
Grüt Mettmenstetten
Herferswil Mettmenstetten
Ober-Mettmenstetten Mettmenstetten
Rossau Mettmenstetten
Unter-Mettmenstetten Mettmenstetten
Wissenbach Mettmenstetten
Bickwil Obfelden
Oberlunnern Obfelden
Toussen Obfelden
Unterlunnern Obfelden
Wolsen Obfelden
Rickenbach near Ottenbach Ottenbach
Schonau Rifferswil
Aumüli Stallikon
Gamlikon Stallikon
8143 Sellenbüren Stallikon
Tägerst Stallikon


For its anniversary in 2000, the non-profit society of the Affoltern district built the 46 km long Ämtlerweg through the “Säuliamt” (Affoltern district). The path leads through beautiful landscapes and nature reserves, to cultural monuments as well as to economically and historically important places. 22 information boards along the way provide information about the Säuliamt and its history.


Knonau Castle
Old courthouse in Affoltern a. A.

From the beginning of the 15th century until the Reformation, the city of Zurich gradually gained control over the areas between Albis and Reuss. Already in 1406 the heirs of John of Hallwyl sold from Langnau , Kappel , Rifferswil . Maschwanden , Ottenbach and portions of today's Obfeldens existing, formerly eschenbachische Bailiwick Maschwanden at Switzerland's largest city. In the course of the federal conquest of Aargau in 1415, Zurich annexed the Freiamt Affoltern including the high jurisdiction over Steinhausen , over the Maschwanderamt, the Kelleramt , over Aesch (Lower Court 1462 to ZH), Birmensdorf -Ober urdorf (Lower Court 1485/1511 to ZH), Hedingen (Lower Court 1503 to ZH), the Knonau lordship (with Ober Mettmenstetten and Aeugst , Lower Court 1512 to ZH), Wettswil - Stallikon (Lower Court 1532/33 to ZH) and Bonstetten (Lower Court 1538 to ZH). During the Old Zurich War , the entire region was severely affected by acts of war and was administered by Schwyz, Glarus, Lucerne and Zug between 1443 and 1450.

One of the traditional autonomy rights of the Freiamt was its own jurisdiction . The places of court handed down from the Habsburg period from 1173-1415 were Rifferswil, Affoltern am Albis and Berikon . The Freiamtsgemeinde met in the Mettmenstetten church . It met for the last time on March 26, 1795, but had to be relocated to the Rüteli near today's railway station because the church was too small for the numerous visitors.

From 1507 to 1512, the Zurich government combined the above-mentioned areas (excluding Aesch , Birmensdorf -Ober urdorf and Wettswil - Stallikon - Bonstetten , which each formed their own upper bailiwick ) to form the Knonau bailiff and standardized the legal system. The centralization efforts of the city of Zurich's guild regime provoked the resistance of the Ämtler population, for example in the Waldmann trade in 1489, in the Wädenswil uprising in 1646 (a tax revolt in Wädenswil and in the Knonaueramt, which was condemned by Zurich with military actions, executions and heavy fines), in the Ämtler trade in 1794/95 and in the buck war in 1804. This last uprising ended for the Knonaueramt with the disarmament and military occupation of the villages, imprisonment and fines as well as the execution under martial law of two revolutionaries, Jakob Schneebeli from Affoltern am Albis and Heinrich Häberling from Knonau , their names (together with those the also executed Hans Jakob Willi from Horgen and Jakob Kleinert from Schönenberg) are immortalized on a memorial stone at the Affoltern train station .

In 1798 the authorities of the Helvetic Republic created the district of Mettmenstetten, which included the core area of ​​the Landvogtei Knonau as well as Aesch , Birmensdorf , Oberurdorf , Wettswil , Stallikon and Bonstetten . Langnau was assigned to the Horgen district on this occasion . Steinhausen and the cellar office , over which Zurich never had the lower court, came to the canton of Zug and the canton of Baden , which in turn became part of the new Aargau in 1803 . In its current boundaries, the district emerged as the Knonau Oberamt after the end of the mediation constitution in 1814 . The district capital was relocated from the former bailiff's seat of Knonau to the more centrally located Affoltern am Albis in 1837. This gave the district its current name.

After the turmoil and crises of the beginning of the century, strong industrialization set in around the middle of the 19th century, which also found expression in terms of transport technology with the opening of the Zurich-Zug railway in 1864. The opening of Nationalstrasse 4 in 2009 marked another important turning point, as Affoltern am Albis could now be reached from Zurich and Zug in less than 15 minutes. In the eighties of the 20th century, a regional protest movement had postponed the construction of the motorway for more than twenty years with growth-critical and ecological arguments, but ultimately could not stop the suburbanization of large parts of the district.

In 2012 almost 50,000 people lived in the Affoltern district and there were 16,000 jobs. In the last ten years, the district recorded a population growth of 16.1% (compared to 14% in the cantonal average).


The measurable properties across all regions of Switzerland are divided into five quantiles , which summarize similar orders of magnitude. For the statistical years from 2014 to 2016, 20% of the districts are in a group that has the comparable characteristics very small / small / medium / large or very large.

The age structure of the permanent resident population (December 31, 2016) shows the large proportion of the somewhat older population compared to the younger generations. The education of the residents is roughly measured at the highest level completed, starting with compulsory school. In the Affoltern district, the permanent resident population aged 25 and over has an average share of upper secondary level (48–51%) and a very large share of universities (> 33%).

The language of the permanent resident population in private households is German. A second main language with a share of over 10% is not available, although the respondents were able to name up to three languages ​​several times. 90% speak fluent German, French 2%, Italian 4%, Romansh 0%, English 5%. Other languages ​​are represented with 14%; this is a small proportion compared to Switzerland at 19.5%.

In the national statistics on living conditions according to type of resident , the apartments used are divided into paid tenancies (including cooperatives) and property (including other such as tenants or free company apartments by employers). The Affoltern district ranks 86th out of 148 with 46% rental apartments, so it has mixed rental apartments and property. Across all districts with five quartiles, the thresholds are 40% / 45% / 51% / 58%, the maximum is around 90%, the minimum around 23%.

The standardized employment rate is defined as the number of economically active persons measured against the permanent resident population aged 15 and over in private households. Switzerland has an employment rate of 66%, in the districts it is between 53% and 73%, the five quantiles have threshold values ​​of 63.0% / 65.4% / 67.6% / 68.6%. The Affoltern district has a very high employment rate of 69.4% (> 68.6%).

The daily commuters are relatively numerous (with a known place of work and people living in Switzerland) at 57% (> 55%). Switzerland has between 38% and 60% work commuters, counted as commuters from the region including internal commuters. In terms of direction, the streams are mostly commuters.


  • Bernhard Schneider: 700 years at a glance: The Knonaueramt - the City of Zurich - the Confederation, Verlag Schneider Communications Ottenbach 2016.

Web links

Commons : Säuliamt  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Permanent and non-permanent resident population by year, canton, district, municipality, population type and gender (permanent resident population). In: bfs. . Federal Statistical Office (FSO), August 31, 2019, accessed on December 22, 2019 .
  2. Federal Statistical Office Generalized Limits 2020.
  3. a b Martin Illi: Knonau (Vogtei). In: Historical Lexicon of Switzerland .
  4. ^ Paul Kläui: History of Obfelden. 1st section . In: History of the community of Obfelden. Festschrift for the centenary of the community . Affoltern am Albis 1947, p. 65-195 (especially 72-83) .
  5. ^ Martin Illi: Zürcher Freiamt. In: Historical Lexicon of Switzerland .
  6. ^ Christian Sieber: Waldmannhandel. In: Historical Lexicon of Switzerland .
  7. Otto Sigg: The 17th Century: State and Society: Obrigkeit-Landvolk: Bloody Tax Revolt in the Rule of Wädenswil (S. 316f.) In: History of the Canton of Zurich, Volume 2 (early modern times) . Zurich 1996, ISBN 3-85932-159-5 .
  8. Sebastian Brändli: The Ämtlerhandel. Patriotic parallel movements to Memorial and Stäfner Handel in the Knonauer Amt . Ed .: Non-profit association Affoltern and nature and homeland protection society Oberamt. Affoltern am Albis and Hausen 1995, ISBN 3-906258-00-9 .
  9. ^ Peter Ziegler: Bockenkrieg. In: Historical Lexicon of Switzerland .
  10. Salomon Schneider: Knonauer Amt is well established , in: "Anzeiger aus dem District Affoltern" No. 56, July 18, 2014, p. 5
  11. Permanent resident population by age, canton, district and municipality (December 31, 2016), table su-d- of the Federal Statistical Office - STATPOP / Statistical Lexicon of Switzerland.
  12. Permanent resident population aged 25 and over according to the highest degree of education and district (2014–2016 cumulative), Table T40. of the Federal Statistical Office - SE / POP 2018.
  13. Permanent resident population by main language and district (2014-2016 cumulative), table T40. of the Federal Statistical Office - SE / POP 2018.
  14. Housing conditions by type of resident (2014-2016 cumulative), table T09. of the Federal Statistical Office - SE, GWS / POP 2018.
  15. ↑ Employment rate of the permanent resident population aged 15 and over by district (2014-2016 cumulative), Table T40. of the Federal Statistical Office - SE / POP 2018.
  16. Commuter balance of work commuters by district (2014-2016 cumulative), table T40. of the Federal Statistical Office - SE / POP 2018.

Coordinates: 47 ° 16 '35.4 "  N , 8 ° 28' 3.4"  E ; CH1903:  six hundred seventy-seven thousand eight hundred fifty-five  /  236688