Free City

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Free City
coat of arms Austria map
Coat of arms of Freistadt
Freistadt (Austria)
Free City
Basic data
Country: Austria
State : Upper Austria
Political District : Free City
License plate : FR
Surface: 12.86 km²
Coordinates : 48 ° 31 '  N , 14 ° 30'  E Coordinates: 48 ° 30 '42 "  N , 14 ° 30' 22"  E
Height : 560  m above sea level A.
Residents : 7,981 (January 1, 2020)
Postal code : 4240
Area code : 07942
Community code : 4 06 01
Address of the
municipal administration:
Hauptplatz 1
4240 Freistadt
Mayoress : Elisabeth Paruta-Teufer ( ÖVP )
Municipal Council : (2015)
(37 members)
17th 8th 4th 
A total of 37 seats
Location of Freistadt in the district of Freistadt
Bad Zell Freistadt Grünbach Gutau Hagenberg im Mühlkreis Hirschbach im Mühlkreis Kaltenberg Kefermarkt Königswiesen Lasberg Leopoldschlag Liebenau Neumarkt im Mühlkreis Pierbach Pregarten Rainbach im Mühlkreis Sandl St. Leonhard bei Freistadt St. Oswald bei Freistadt Schönau im Mühlkreis Tragwein Unterweißenbach Unterweitersdorf Waldburg Wartberg ob der Aist Weitersfelden Windhaag bei Freistadt OberösterreichLocation of the municipality of Freistadt in the district of Freistadt (clickable map)
About this picture
Template: Infobox municipality in Austria / maintenance / site plan image map
Free city seen from the keep towards the south
Free city seen from the keep towards the south
Source: Municipal data from Statistics Austria

Freistadt ( Czech Cáhlov ) is an Upper Austrian municipality with 7981 inhabitants (as of January 1, 2020) in the Lower Mühlviertel and has been the seat of the district administration of the Freistadt district since 1849 . The city is located around 38 kilometers northeast of the state capital Linz and around 17 kilometers south of the state border with the Czech Republic .

Freistadt was laid out according to plan from 1220 and experienced its heyday between the 14th and 16th centuries. After the Thirty Years War , Freistadt lost all privileges from the time it was founded. This resulted in an economic downturn and in the 19th century it developed into a school and administrative town. In the two world wars there were no armed conflicts in the Freistadt area. After the end of the Second World War , Freistadt was in the Soviet occupation zone .

Freistadt is the school, cultural, medical and economic center of the district of the same name. The Gothic old town with the medieval city fortifications, the defense towers and the baroque facades of the town houses are among the sights of the city. Freistadt is one of the few cities in Austria whose fortifications have been almost completely preserved.



Free city seen from the southwest

Freistadt is located in the northeastern part of the Mühlviertel ( lower Mühlviertel ) south of the Freiwald in an extensive valley basin , the so-called Freistadt Basin . In the west, north and east, Freistadt is surrounded by wooded hills around 650 to 700 meters high, which are only interrupted by the Thury Valley . To the south, smaller hills enclose the urban area. The urban area extends over 12.86 square kilometers. This makes Freistadt the second smallest municipality in the district in terms of area. The greatest expansion in east-west direction is 4.9 km, in north-south direction 5.7 km.

The city lies at an altitude of 560  m above sea level. A. , measured at the town hall on the main square. The highest point of the municipality is with a height of 732  m above sea level. A. the Trölsberg in the southwest, the lowest is on the Feldaist in the southeast (around 544  m above sea level ).

The provincial capital Linz is about 38 km southwest of Freistadt, the Czech city České Budějovice (Budweis) about 60 km north of Freistadt. The federal capital Vienna is two hours away by car to the east (approx. 180 km). The state border with the Czech Republic (near Wullowitz) is approximately 17 km north of the city.

Geology and waters

Freetown granodiorite used as building material at the keep

Freistadt lies on the granite and gneiss plateau , the Austrian part of the Bohemian Massif, and belongs to the Upper Austrian spatial unit of the Central Mühlviertel Highlands . In the Freistadt area, the Freistadt granodiorite can be found, which occurs in two variants, the medium-grain edge type (edge ​​facies) and the fine-grain core type (core facies). From the Hafnerzeile along the trench (northeast of the old town, along the Feldaist), the trench granite occurs , a medium-grain two-mica granite with the main portion of plagioclase and strikingly large, round quartz grains. The biotite content is around 7%, the light mica content 3 to 4%. Although the grave granite has similarities with the Freistadt granodiorite, it stands out due to its brightness. In the area of ​​the old town, coarse granodiorite predominates.

Along the Jaunitz water in the area of ​​the station there are tertiary sediments that run north along the railway line. The sediments rich in mica and feldspar can essentially be divided into rust-brown sands and gravels as well as blue-gray sands, silts and clays . Pieces of silicified wood are repeatedly found in these sediments. In the valley area of ​​the Jaunitz these sediments exist in low thickness, to the north or northeast they move over a ridge to the Prandl homestead . The only good outcrop is the gravel and sand pit around 500 meters northeast of the Lengauer homestead (municipality of Waldburg).

The Feldaist flows through Freistadt from north to south towards the Danube . The Jaunitz, coming from the west, partially forms the municipality boundary in the south and flows into the Feldaist. Other rivers (Bockaubach and Schorbenbach) that also flow into the Feldaist are insignificant. The streams in the Freistadt area hardly deposited any significant amounts of alluvion . The Frauenteich near the Böhmertor , the Pregartenteich near the brewery and the Weihteich in the district of Galgenau exist at well-known still waters .

Urban structure and land use

Overview map and land use

The city lies on a single cadastral municipality of the same name and is divided into four following localities (number of inhabitants in brackets as of January 1, 2020):

The district of Freistadt comprises the entire built-up area around the old town including the Bohemian suburb in the north and the Linz suburb in the south. The district of Galgenau is located in the south of the city in the area of ​​the agricultural school, the district of Trölsberg includes the buildings around the train station in the southwest and the district of St. Peter is located north of the district of Trölsberg on a hill. The last three districts mentioned were added to the municipality on November 1, 1938, when the municipality of Zeiß was dissolved or on October 1, 1939, as areas were ceded by the municipalities of Waldburg and Grünbach.

The largest part of the municipality area of ​​12.88 square kilometers is taken up by agricultural land, which comprises more than 48% of the municipality area (Upper Austria 49.3%). Forests account for 24.1% (Upper Austria: 36.9%), 15.5% for construction areas and buildings, 6.7% for traffic areas, 2.2% for gardens, 0.9% for bodies of water and 2.6% on other areas.


Climate diagram

The climate in Freistadt is harsh, due to the location in a valley basin ( cold air lake formation ). In rare cases, morning frosts can occur as early as September. The Freistädter Basin differs climatically from the southern Mühlviertel and the Upper Austrian central area in that it has more snow and a somewhat lower frequency of fog and high fog. The precipitation is less than at a similar altitude on the northern edge of the Alps in Upper Austria. The basin is one of the climatically most continental parts of Upper Austria.

The air temperature (daily mean) in the years 1971 to 2000 was on average around 2.5 ° C lower than in the state capital Linz and was 6.9 ° C for Freistadt. The average amount of precipitation was around 700 millimeters per year. 75.5  days of frost and 21  days of ice are compared to 50.7  summer days and 8.3  hot days . There is snow on an average of 74.2  days ; On 10.5 days the snow depth is more than 20 centimeters, with the maximum snow cover of 65 cm being reached in February. Freistadt records 1,741.1 hours of sunshine annually  , with less than 50 hours of sunshine between November and January and more than 235 hours in July and August. The wind mostly comes from the west and north-west.

Freistadt has been a climate alliance partner community since 1991 and refers to its own activities to continuously reduce greenhouse gas emissions, for example in the areas of energy, transport and other projects.

Average monthly temperatures and precipitation for Freistadt
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Max. Temperature ( ° C ) 1.4 3.5 8.0 13.8 19.1 21.7 24.0 23.5 18.7 13.6 6.4 2.1 O 13
Min. Temperature (° C) -6.4 -5.6 -1.6 1.8 6.7 9.7 11.5 11.2 7.4 3.1 -1.2 -4.8 O 2.7
Temperature (° C) -3.0 -1.8 2.4 7.3 12.9 15.9 17.8 17.0 12.2 7.3 2.1 -1.7 O 7.4
Precipitation ( mm ) 42 42 57 47 77 94 117 104 63 48 48 50 Σ 789
Humidity ( % ) 74.6 66.1 61.2 53.0 52.6 55.6 54.5 54.1 59.0 62.6 74.0 78.3 O 62.1
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
  Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Neighboring communities

Surroundings of Freistadt

The city of Freistadt is surrounded by six municipalities, all of which belong to the Freistadt district . The following municipalities border the urban area (they are named clockwise , starting in the north):

Rainbach im Mühlkreis , Grünbach , Lasberg , Kefermarkt , Neumarkt im Mühlkreis and Waldburg .

In the east, the municipality of Lasberg with the district of Manzenreith is up to 130 meters as the crow flies from the old town. In the south, the municipality border with Neumarkt im Mühlkreis is around 4.5 kilometers as the crow flies.

The city works with all municipalities in the district in the Association of Intercommunal Business Settlement Region Freistadt with three locations in the entire district.


Seal of the city around 1437
Freistadt around 1571
Section through the city walls (castle museum)

City foundation, rise and prosperity

There can only be guesses as to the exact point in time when the city was built, as any documents have either been lost or give too little information. It is assumed that Freistadt was planned around 1225 by the Babenberg Leopold VI., The Glorious (Duke of Austria) by expanding an existing settlement on the trade route from Enns to the north and giving it numerous privileges to secure its economic existence. For the first time, Freistadt was mentioned in a document as "Frienstat" in 1241, in 1277 King Rudolf von Habsburg granted the "Vreinstat" (the name of the city at the time) the right to lay down and stack as well as compulsory streets .

As a result of the privileges granted, Freistadt quickly rose to become a rich and prosperous city from the 14th century and became the economic center of the Mühlviertel. The location on an important trade route ( Goldener Steig ) was the basis of life and source of wealth. The main trade goods to the north were iron and salt from southern Upper Austria and fish from Bohemia to the south. The old castle was expanded into a salt warehouse (today's Salzhof) in the 15th century. During these years, Freistadt was able to steadily increase its wealth and defend its privileges against neighboring towns.

The first city ​​walls were significantly strengthened to protect wealth at the end of the 14th century and mid-15th century, and the city fortifications that still exist today and the Freistadt Castle were built in the northeast corner of the city. The city had towers built along the city wall as the most important defensive structures . In the Middle Ages, the Linzertor in the south and the Böhmertor in the north were the only possible entry points for horse-drawn vehicles over drawbridges.

In its entire history, Freistadt was spared major military destruction. However, there was a siege during the Hussite Wars (1424-1432), during which the suburb and the Frauenkirche were burned down. In 1596 and 1626 peasant armies besieged the city and in 1610 the Bavarians. However, major damage in the city caused fires. The two great city ​​fires in 1507 and 1516 destroyed all the houses in the city and the lavish furnishings of the city ​​parish church . Only the remote castle and the houses in the suburbs were spared. As a result, the houses were equipped with mantle walls (fire walls) that are still visible today.

The Protestantism was rapidly adopted in Freistadt on the basis of trade relations and more famous than half the population in 1610 to this faith. The radical Reformation Anabaptist movement also had a community in the city, which was probably founded by Hans Schlaffer . In the course of the Counter Reformation after the Second Upper Austrian Peasants' War and the victory of Emperor Ferdinand II over the Protestants, all Protestants were expelled in 1627; Nothing precise is known about their later place of residence. For a long time the city was unable to overcome this great loss of substance.

Turning point 1627 and the time up to the First World War

Freistadt around 1649

The Thirty Years War was a turning point in the history of the city. By changing the border with Bohemia, Freistadt lost its privileges and lost its importance as a trading town and bulwark (border town). The economic situation after the end of the Thirty Years War was very bad. In addition to the decline in trade, absolutism (loss of political self-government) and mercantilism (manufacturers reduced the importance of the guilds) decreased the importance of the city. The city's greatest advantage was its location on an important trade route - the salt trade to Bohemia still took the route via Freistadt - which prevented impoverishment. As a result, Freistadt never regained the importance it had before the Thirty Years' War.

In 1777 a new brewery was built after the brewing commune Freistadt was founded in 1770. Freistadt has been the capital of the district of the same name since 1850 . The Freistädter Messe (today: Messe Mühlviertel ), which was held for the first time in 1862, was intended to initiate the economic upswing. The horse-drawn railway Linz-Budweis went from 1832 far past the city. Only when the Summerau Railway opened in November 1872 was a train station built in Freistadt.

The Piarists ran a German school and a Latin school from 1761 to 1870 . The development towards a school town is evident from the fact that the poor school sisters of our dear lady have been running a school in the town since 1852 . In 1900 the Marianists came and built a large school building outside the city , in which they still run a private school today. Since 1867 there has been a lower level of a grammar school in Freistadt , in 1871 the upper level followed.

From the First World War until today

Emergency money in 1920
Revitalized moat at the Böhmertor

During World War I , the military set up a prisoner-of-war camp for Russian soldiers in Freistadt , which accommodated up to 20,000 prisoners in 91 barracks. In the interwar period, as in the rest of Austria, political parties were radicalized , but no shots were fired during the civil war in 1934.

Attempts to improve the economic situation led to the establishment of new companies, the public sector promoted the economy and invested in paving the streets and sewing. In 1937 the "Erzherzog-Karl-Kaserne" (today "Tilly-Kaserne") opened.

After the outbreak of the Second World War , the Wehrmacht enlarged the existing garrison and subsequently stationed more than 1,000 soldiers in Freistadt. Some residents of Freiberg joined the resistance group New Free Austria . However, they were betrayed in October 1944, later sentenced to death and executed on May 1, 1945. A memorial in front of the Linzertor commemorates this event.

During the war not a single bomb fell on Freistadt, which housed three hospitals towards the end of the war . On May 7, 1945, American tanks reached the city without a fight. On May 13, the Red Army joined them and shared the city with the Americans until May 23, when they withdrew south of the railway line. The Soviet soldiers quartered themselves in private houses as the occupying power, and the Hagleitner house on the main square served as the headquarters of the commandant's office. In 1945, 100,000 refugees moved through the city, who were housed in several refugee camps. At its peak, over 12,000 refugees were in the city at the same time. The economic upturn remained low due to the lack of investment in the first post-war years.

Only after the State Treaty of May 5, 1955 and the withdrawal of the Soviet occupying power did the investment climate change and Freistadt also benefited from Austria's so-called economic miracle . Characteristics of the upswing were, among other things, the increase in the population to around 6,000 inhabitants, the establishment of new companies and the expansion of capacities in existing companies. In addition, investments were made in housing and road construction, the construction of water pipes and sewer systems and the construction of a sewage treatment plant . The redevelopment of the old town should promote tourism . Further infrastructure measures were carried out with the construction of a hospital in 1947 and the renovation of the swimming pools and sports facilities. Freistadt developed more and more into a school town, between 1956 and 1971 four new school buildings were built.

In 1977, several settings for the TV miniseries "Holocaust", which were broadcast in 1979, were shot in Freistadt, including scenes that took place in the Theresienstadt concentration camp .

In the early 1990s, the new regional hospital was built in the south of the city. In the late autumn of 1997 a farmer found a very important silver treasure with 6,700 coins and hundreds of silver objects while plowing a field near the Fuchsenhof farm . It was not until 2004 that the find, which probably belonged to a goldsmith, was made available to the public; since then it has been in the Schlossmuseum Linz .

The heavy rainfall during the Danube floods in 2002 led to flooding in the vicinity of the Feldaist . In 2003, the Salzhof was converted into a culture and event center and the exhibition and event hall was built. In 2004 the city built the new multifunctional sports hall.

The 2013 state exhibition was accompanied by a renovation of many old town houses and the renewal of their lighting. With the opening of the S 10 - Freistadt bypass - on November 15, 2014, traffic-related relief of the B 310 through the urban area is expected.


Population development

Population development

In 1541 about 230 people (that was about a seventh of the population of Freetown) died of the plague. Mathematically, this corresponds to a population of around 1610 at that time. At the beginning of the 19th century there were around 2500 residents in Freistadt. In 1869, 3253 people lived in the city. Since then there has been a slight increase in population that has continued to this day. The highest population surge was recorded at the beginning of the Nazi era in 1939 due to the enlarged garrison. Since the end of the Second World War, Freistadt has grown faster than the political district of the same name or the state of Upper Austria. In 1991 the city had 6917 inhabitants at the census , in 2001 already 7353, which corresponds to an increase of 6.3%. In the following years the population moved in a range between a maximum of 7506 residents (2002) and a minimum of 7437 residents (2008/2009). As of January 1, 2011, the population was 7,482.

From the Middle Ages to the year 2000, Freistadt was the most populous municipality in the Mühlviertel (outside the current city limits of Linz), before the city was replaced by the municipality of Engerwitzdorf .

Population level and structure

In the 2011 survey, the proportion of residents who were 65 years of age and older was 15.8%; 15.6% were under 15 years old. The proportion of the female population was 51.7%.

Of the 5952 residents of Freistadt, who were over 15 years old at the 2001 census, 7.6% had graduated from a university , technical college or academy . Another 9.9% had completed a high school diploma, 35.2% had completed an apprenticeship or a vocational middle school and 36.5% of all citizens of Freiberg had compulsory school as their highest qualification.

The German dialect, which is generally spoken in the Freistadt area and in most of Upper Austria, is East Central Bavarian or Danube Bavarian . The ostösterreichische branch of the middle Bairischen goes to the dialect of the created by the Bavarian Ostsiedlung Babenberg dominion Ostarrichi back. In 2001, 93.1% of the residents of Freiberg stated German as a colloquial language. Another 3.4% spoke mainly Turkish , 0.8% Croatian and 0.5% Czech .

The proportion of residents of the Freetown with foreign citizenship was 5.7% in 2011, below the average for Upper Austria. Of all 427 inhabitants with non-Austrian citizenship, 39.3% were Turkish citizens, 30.6% were citizens from other EU countries and 22.7% were citizens from other European countries. The remaining 7.4% are spread across the other continents.

In 2011, the share of free-town residents with a foreign place of birth was 9.3%, again Turkey with 36.9% leads the EU countries with 36.2%. The rest is distributed across all continents in the same way as the citizenships.


Freistadt was always strongly influenced by Catholicism . Only a few years before the Counter-Reformation , the Protestants made up the majority of the population of Freetown. After their expulsion, only Catholics officially lived in the city; the converted Protestants practiced their denomination in secret. Since 1997 there has been a free church gospel congregation in Freistadt, which holds its services in the technology center Freistadt. The other members of the Protestant Church belong to the Protestant parish of Gallneukirchen , and the service is celebrated in the Marianum chapel. It was only in the past few decades that people with Islamic faith settled here and since 1992 they have been able to practice their religion in a prayer room. Since the 1990s, Jehovah's Witnesses have had a meeting room (Kingdom Hall) northeast of the Old City. Jews played no role in the history of Freistadt because they were forbidden to settle, they only came to the city as traders.

Furthermore, Freistadt is the seat of the Catholic parish Freistadt , which looks after three kindergartens and four churches in and around Freistadt and has 6,818 believers. The Dechanthof in Freistadt is also the seat of the Roman Catholic deanery Freistadt, which comprises 15 parishes.

In the 2001 census, the proportion of people with a Roman Catholic faith was 85.9%. It was followed by 4.8% with Islamic , 0.9% with Protestant belief and 3% with another belief. 5.4% of the residents of the Free City were without religious beliefs.

Culture and sights

City map of today's old town with description

City fortifications, defense towers and town houses


The medieval old town of Freistadt with city fortifications and defense towers has been almost completely preserved; the most important sights of the city can be found there. Freistadt has 163 listed buildings (as of June 22, 2014), most of them are in the old town.

Freistadt is considered to be a prime example of a planned city: The large, rectangular main square is the heart of the city. The relatively wide streets are arranged parallel to the axes. The tower of the parish church was built on the highest point of the city and stands at the intersection of the two main streets, the Pfarrgasse and the Böhmergasse . The arrangement of the church, Freyung (today's east choir of the church) and town hall (today's district court) in close proximity to one another was probably unique in Austria. The old town within the city walls with its alleys, squares and around 150 town houses is a good example of late Middle Ages architecture with Gothic and Renaissance structures (13th to 16th centuries). In the Baroque period, the facades of many buildings were renewed.

Of the original eight defense towers, six are still preserved, the other two fell victim to fires. The oldest towers are the Linzertor in the south and the Böhmertor in the north, which were built when the city was founded. After the expansion of the city fortifications between 1363 and 1396 (city wall and Weyermühlturm, Bürgerkorpsturm and tower in the corner), the fortifications with the Scheibling Tower and the Dechanthofturm were completed in 1444. They got their current appearance between 1485 and 1500, when numerous defensive towers were rebuilt by master stonemason Mathes Klayndl . Since then, the city fortifications have consisted of the outer city moat wall, city moat, outer city wall, kennel and inner city wall with battlements. The city moat is now used as a park, and sidewalks lead through the publicly accessible part. Instead of the three entrances to the city in the Middle Ages, there are now six.


Choir of the parish church

The Catholic parish church , the so-called Katharinenmünster , is the only five-aisled basilica in Austria and the main church of the city. It was first mentioned in a document in 1288. In the 14th and 15th centuries, the church was Gothicized and converted into a five-aisled basilica. In the 17th century, it was rebuilt in the Baroque style , and in 1967 the Gothic style was largely restored. The 67 meter high baroque church tower (1737) can be seen from afar and is the tallest building in the city. The parish church is dedicated to Saint Catherine , who is also the patron saint of Freistadt.

The listed Catholic Church of Our Lady is located outside the city wall in front of the Böhmertor and was first mentioned in 1345. The Hussites burned the church down in 1422 and it was rebuilt in the Gothic style. The church has remained almost unchanged since the 15th century and is considered an example of the Gothic architectural style. A special attraction in this church is the stone column for the Eternal Light from 1484, a late Gothic lamp for the dead. It is the only work of art of its kind in town. There are currently no regular services in this church.

The Catholic Johanneskirche , a small church on the southern edge of the city, dates from the Romanesque period (12th century) and is owned by the city. According to the building structure, it is the oldest church in the city. After the church was profaned in 1789, it was restored and re-consecrated in 1857 by the merchant Kaspar Schwarz . Until 2004, the church served as a funeral hall for the Freistadt cemetery, which is around 500 meters south of the church . It has not been used since 2004.

In today's parish of Waldburg is the Catholic Church of St. Peter , which existed before the city was founded and is currently administered by the parish of Freistadt. The church, to which a Way of the Cross leads, is to the west, around 150 meters above the town of Freistadt. The three-aisled hall church of Sankt Peter was built around 1467 after the Hussite Wars in the Gothic style and received three baroque altars in the 17th century. The church includes the Kalvarienbergkapelle, a Gothic building from 1370, which is also the twelfth station on the Way of the Cross.

Museums and galleries

Behind glass collection in the museum

The Mühlviertel Castle Museum in the Habsburg Castle is the only museum in Freistadt and has around 21,000 mainly folkloric exhibits and objects from the city's history. It has a unique collection of reverse glass paintings from Sandl . In the castle tower (keep) the museum shows exhibitions on topics such as belief and superstition, scales and measurement, custom and popular piety. The ninth floor is the former Türmerstube, it leads to an outer walkway at a height of 40 meters with views of the city and the surrounding hills.

The listed second Thuryhammer in the Thurytal is over 140 years old, was renovated at the end of the 20th century and today serves as an open-air museum and show. The other two Thuryhammers are just ruins. In this technically and economically important area of ​​the Feldaist north of the city, there have been iron processing companies since the Middle Ages, which existed until 1870.

There are four galleries in the city, of which the “Brauhausgalerie” in the brewery is the largest.

Cultural and event centers


In 2003 the renovated, listed Salzhof was opened as the city's new cultural and event center and is now the city's cultural center. Exhibitions, concerts, theater performances, balls and some events on the local stage take place here. There are several rooms available in the building for up to 400 people, the most important of which is the Kulturhof with 311 square meters. On average, one event per day takes place in the Salzhof.

The local stage , which offers many different cultural events, is housed in the Freistadt cinema . The most important include Sunnseitn, Sommerrhythmen, Frischling and the Heimatfilmfestival . Sunnseitn is a music event and brings authentic folk music from numerous countries to several dance floors in Freistadt every year at the end of July . Sommerrhythmen presents a variety of musical styles from international and Austrian music groups, from folk music to ethno to modern rhythms. The Freistädter rookie has since 1995 on two evenings young cabaret artists the opportunity to present themselves to the public.

The Freistadt cinema in the central Salzgasse plays in three halls and is part of the Europa Cinemas network.

The Heimatfilmfestival (also: Der neue Heimatfilm ) is an international five-day film festival that has been taking place in Freistadt every year since 1988 at the end of August. The main prize of the festival is the “Film Prize of the City of Freistadt”, which is endowed with 2222 euros.

In the exhibition hall, which was built in 2003, exhibitions, fairs, balls and music events are held regularly. The center of the January rally is also located there. The oval hall, which was built entirely in wood, offers up to 6000 standing places or 3000 seats on 3173 square meters.


No local daily newspaper is published in Freistadt; to this end, regional reporting is increasingly being expanded by the daily newspapers appearing in Upper Austria.

With the "Freistädter TIPS" ( Top Info Plus Service ) a free regional newspaper appears weekly . This medium belongs to "Tips Zeitungs GmbH & Co KG " and 100% of J. Wimmer GmbH, which holds a majority stake in the daily newspaper Oberösterreichische Nachrichten . The current edition is also available on the Internet. Since the beginning of 2009, the free, small-format Bezirks Rundschau has been published as the successor to the large-format weekly newspaper “Freistädter Rundschau” . In addition, the “Rundschau am Sonntag” is a third free regional newspaper for Freistadt. The last two media are owned by Moser Holding AG.

The official gazette of the city of Freistadt is published six times a year at irregular intervals under the title “Aktuell aus dem Rathaus”.

There are two radio stations in Freistadt, " Free Radio Freistadt " and " Radius 106.6 ". Freie Radio Freistadt has been broadcasting since March 2005 and is a non-profit, not-for-profit radio station, Radius 106.6 is the school radio of the grammar school , where it has had its broadcast studio since March 2003. The two radio stations work together on the youth program. Free Radio Freistadt started as a media project in 2001 at the Festival of Regions , the school radio was launched in 2002. In addition, Freie Radio Freistadt also takes on broadcasts from the youth internet radio ICM from Český Krumlov (Krumau, Czech Republic) and the Tilos Radio Budapest.

With “MF1plus” there is a TV station in the city that mainly reports on news from the Mühlviertel . This television station can be received in the TV cable network and via the Internet. LT1 is a private TV broadcaster that can be received digitally terrestrial (DVB-T) via antenna and, with LT1 Mühlviertel, offers a regional program for the Mühlviertel. The half-hour program is repeated several times and renewed daily.

Traditional cultural associations

Citizen Corps Uniform and Flag (Castle Museum)

The privileged uniformed citizen corps Freistadt has served its defense and the protection of the merchants since the city was founded. The Citizens Corps was founded in 1132 and still exists today with a few interruptions. The corps is currently a cultural association with 65 active members and serves to maintain the cultural history of Freetown with expressions on Corpus Christi , honors of war on All Saints Day, participation in funerals, etc. In addition, the Easter or grave watch is held on Good Friday and Holy Saturday in front of the town hall and the church. The identification mark is a dark green plume on the hat. The citizen corps is housed in the citizen corps tower (next to the Linzertor ).

The gold bonnet women and headscarf wearers including the Freistadt festival costume (special feature: a small point (pointed) pointing upwards on the back of the costume) or the gold bonnet dress have been taking part in events in Freistadt for many decades. Today the association has around 40 active members including children. The gold bonnet spread from Linz throughout Upper Austria in the first half of the 19th century and was the festive costume for going to church on Sundays.

With the academic holiday association Ostara (since 1894) and the student associations K.Ö.St.V. Nibelungia (since 1924) in the Mittelschüler-Kartell-Verband and Pennale Burschenschaft Alemannia (since 1896) have three student connections in Freistadt.


The Guards Music or Band of the Comradeship Association , with currently 40 musicians, has been part of the Citizens Corps for centuries. Identification is a white plume on the hat.

The town band of Freistadt has existed since 1923 . This brass band currently has around 55 musicians and five sutlers who perform in traditional costumes or uniforms.

The Freistadt choir community is a mixed choir and has around 40 members. The origin of the choir community was the male choir Freistadt 1849 , which was founded on October 15, 1849. From the very beginning, the choir played an important role in the city's cultural and social life. Choral music from all eras and styles is cultivated.

Mühlviertel Exhibition Center

Exhibition hall

To promote the economy, the first exhibition of the Obderennsische Landwirtschaftsgesellschaft was held in 1862 . This led to the development of the Freistädter Messe (today: Messe Mühlviertel ), the third largest trade fair in Upper Austria at the end of the 20th century. Initially, the fair was held every four years and later every two years. More than 200 exhibitors present their products at the wedding on 19,000 square meters of exhibition space with a total of 8 halls and an outdoor area. The fair has been held annually in mid-August since 2007. Since 2014 the Mühlviertler Messe has been taking place as the Mühlviertler Wiesn due to a lack of exhibitors without a trade show.

The event is the largest and most important in Freistadt and has around 50,000 guests from the Mühlviertel and the surrounding parts of the country. The centerpiece and at the same time the largest hall is the exhibition hall built in 2003.

Regular events

In addition to the Mühlviertel trade fair, there are numerous other events. The January rally, which was driven for the first time in 1969, marks the beginning of the calendar year. After a break between 1986 and 2000, this is now being carried out regularly again. In summer there are numerous events on the local stage as well as festivals on some weekends in the old town, such as the Eisengassenfest or the old town festival. The St. Peter's fire on the weekend after the summer solstice is also a fixed point of the annual events. In December, the Christmas market is held in the outer and inner courtyard .

Every Friday afternoon between the beginning of April and the end of October the fresh market takes place on the main square. This market has existed since 2003 to revitalize the city center and serves as a local supply with musical entertainment and entertainment. Every Saturday morning, the farmers' market , also on the main square, offers fresh products and specialties directly from farmers in the area. In addition to the fresh produce and farmers market, five other markets such as Paulimarkt (during the first week of February) and Josefimarkt (on March 19th) are held on the main square on certain calendar days.

State exhibition 2013

In 2013 the state exhibition took place in Freistadt together with Bad Leonfelden , Český Krumlov (Krumau) and Vyšší Brod (Hohenfurth) . The working title of the state exhibition was "Old Tracks, New Ways". The exhibition shows the connections between the two regions, which have walked a long stretch of their historical path together until the Iron Curtain separated them. Among other things, connecting elements of the landscapes, the traffic engineering in the Middle Ages, the salt road and similarities in culinary art and customs are discussed.

The historic building of the Freistadt brewery was extensively rebuilt for the state exhibition and a brewery inn was also opened. The brewery was the center of the exhibitions in Freistadt and is still used today as a gallery and brewing museum.

sport and freetime

Football stadium
Athletics and fistball at the Marianumsportplatz

A total of 45 sports clubs are active in the city of Freistadt, including hiking clubs, a rifle club, aviation clubs and the army sports club with several sections.

The most important clubs are:

  • The Austrian Gymnastics Federation (ÖTB) Freistadt has existed since 1887 and is therefore the city's oldest sports club. The ÖTB is divided into six sections: aerobics , general gymnastics , fistball , gymnastics , rhythmic sports gymnastics and hiking . The ÖTB gym is located on Stifterplatz, opposite the elementary school.
  • The Sport Union Freistadt has approximately 860 members of the largest membership sports club in Freistadt and has ten sections aikido , badminton , basketball , billiards , Fistball , athletics , alpine skiing , curling , gymnastics and volleyball . The most successful section is fistball with the Union Schick Freistadt team , which is one of the best teams in Austria and won the national championship title in summer 2004 and the European Cup in 2005. In the 2007/08 season the team was runner-up. The youth teams in the fistball section were also able to win numerous national and regional championship titles in all classes. The Mühlviertel slalom specialist Alexander Koll competed in the World Cup for the Alpine skiing section of Union Freistadt . The Marianumsportplatz and the Stockhalle in the Eglsee are the sports facilities of the Union, at the Marianumsportplatz in 2000 the European men's fistball championship took place.
  • The SV Freistadt , founded in 1935, is today only from the section football . The previous swimming and table tennis sections have now been closed. In addition to the combat team, the U24 and senior citizens, the football club looks after 150 young players in six classes. The fighting team has played in the second regional league east, the fifth highest division in Austria, since 1995. In the 2009/10 season, the team won the autumn championship. In the 2011/2012 season, SV Freistadt made it to the Upper Austria League, the highest division in Upper Austria. The homestead is on Bahnhofstrasse next to the indoor swimming pool.
  • The ASKÖ Freistadt association was founded in 1920. The sports club initially consisted of five sections, but the offer has now increased to seven sections and a multitude of opportunities to do sports. Since 2001, the ASKÖ has again had a successful volleyball and beach volleyball section, the Powervolleys Freistadt , which became Upper Austrian national champions for the second time in a row in the 2007/08 season and currently plays in the 2nd Bundesliga West.

For further sporting activities, there is an indoor tennis center with outdoor courts and an indoor pool in winter or the outdoor pool in summer. If there is enough snow in winter, the ski lift (500 meters of piste including snow-making equipment ) is opened and cross- country trails are groomed. The Nordwaldkammweg , a 144-kilometer main hiking trail , runs through Freistadt .

Economy and Infrastructure

Employment and income

Freistadt is the economic center of the Freistadt district. The number of workplaces rose by 20.9% to 510 between the last two censuses (1991 and 2001). The 11.5% increase in municipal tax revenue between 2001 and 2004 shows the economic growth of Freistadt. In 2007, 34 new companies were founded in Freistadt. However, 64 employees were affected by the closure of kitchen production at household appliance manufacturer Gorenje in August 2007.

According to the 2001 census survey, 1.2% of the approximately 4,600 employed persons were employed in agriculture and forestry, 19.8% in industry, trade and construction and 79.0% in the service sector.

Around 25% of the residents of Freistadt have their job in the municipality, a very high proportion compared to the other municipalities in the district. The remaining employees commute, with most commuters working in the state capital of Linz, which is around 40 kilometers away. It is noticeable that mostly men commute, whereas women are more often employed in Freistadt.

The median value of the gross monthly income of an employed person in 2006 was 1659 euros gross (Upper Austria: 1,778 euros), which is paid out 14 times a year. The male portion of the population earned an average of 2,095 euros gross, while women only earned 1,191 euros gross. Overall, the median value of the city of Freistadt is around 7% below the average income of the district of Freistadt (1777 euros) and the federal state of Upper Austria (1778 euros).

In 2003, the purchasing power in Freistadt was between 6,400 euros and 7,100 euros and thus in the middle of Upper Austria. The balance of the inflows and outflows of purchasing power flows is between 50% and 100%. The purchasing power flow analysis shows that the city of Freistadt ranks eighth among all Upper Austrian municipalities in terms of purchasing power inflows with 67.5 million euros. The city is therefore a regional magnet for purchasing power and has more purchasing power inflow from the surrounding communities than comparable district cities.

The unemployment rate in the Freistadt district was 3.0% in July 2009, below the national average of 4.5% (only available at the district level), which means that the economic crisis is hardly noticeable on the labor market. The annual average for 2008 was 2.9% (Upper Austria 3.5%, Austria 5.8%), which means that there was full employment in Freistadt .

Established businesses

Brewery with brewery gallery
  • The oldest still active company in Freistadt is the Gasthaus Strasseder am Trölsberg, which was founded in 1723.
  • The Braucommune Freistadt , which was founded in 1777, is also one of the oldest companies in the city. The Braucommune is the only municipality in Europe that is registered as such in the commercial register.
  • The largest employer in the city of Freistadt and the entire district is the State Hospital Freistadt with more than 430  employees .
  • A. Haberkorn GmbH, which employs around 230 people, was founded in 1925. It is a manufacturer of technical textiles and a wholesaler of garden furniture, toys and children's items.
  • The company FM Küchen (Freistädter Möbelfabrik) in the Kefermarkt district of Galgenau also employs a large number of Freistadt residents. This company with 184 employees is the third largest employer in the district and emerged from the Moßböck furniture factory, which was founded in the Trölsberg district near the train station after the First World War. These two companies are the only companies from Freetown among the top 500 in Upper Austria.

Other important companies in Freistadt are the social welfare association Freistadt with 140 employees and Austria's largest photo mail order company HappyFoto , which was founded in 1978. On the site of the former Mäser textile factory, the Freistadt technology center was built, in which twelve companies are currently (2008) based.

In the INKOBA construction area Freistadt-Rainbach, Greiner Bio-One GmbH (diagnostic and pharmaceutical industry) has created around 100 new jobs in production, warehouse and quality management since March 2009; another 200 are planned by the end of 2011, making it the largest commercial operation of the District emerges. In 2017 the company Kreisel Electric (developments in e-mobility and storage) with 100 employees was added at the same location .


Livestock 2007
Bovine 914
Sheep 32
Goats 4th
Chicken 241
Horses 16
Pigs 62

In 1999 there were 53 agricultural and forestry operations in Freistadt, which cultivated a total of around 1104 hectares. 18 companies were run as full-time jobs and 30 as part-time jobs. Four farms were owned by legal entities and one farm had no land to cultivate. Compared with 1995, the number of farms has continued to decline, particularly in the field of part-time farmers, while the number of full-time farms has increased by four. Overall, the number of agricultural holdings decreased by 31.2% between 1995 and 1999, while the cultivated area remained almost unchanged. These companies employ 144 people, 110 of whom are family members.


Hotel Deim - the only 4-star hotel in town

In the 2008 calendar year, the city recorded a total of 25,020 overnight stays with an average of 2 days of stay, in the following year the overnight stays fell to around 21,760; In 2009, domestic guests accounted for 12,384 overnight stays (57%), with visitors from Upper Austria accounting for the highest proportion with around 24%. Among the foreign guests, Germans led the way with around 54% (5059 overnight stays), ahead of visitors from Italy with around 17% (1628 overnight stays). Around 70% of the guests visit the city in the summer half-year between May and October. Since the tourism year 2008, the city has recorded a steady decline in the number of overnight stays from around 24,700 to around 21,000 overnight stays in the tourism year 2010.

There are two hotels available in the city (one four and one three star hotel). In addition, Freistadt also has two three-star guesthouses, some landlords of private rooms, a youth hostel and a campsite with 40 parking spaces. Holidays on the farm are also possible in Freistadt. The eleven accommodation providers have around 240 beds in 130 rooms.

Authorities, institutions and courts

District Commission
Chamber of Labor

As the capital of the district of the same name, Freistadt is the seat of a district administration and a district court . In addition, Freistadt houses a road maintenance department that is responsible for the former federal roads in the municipality. A tax office , a labor market service center and a state hospital can also be found in the city.

Freistadt is the seat of the district police command and a police station , which are housed in the same building on the Mühlviertler Bundesstrasse (B 310). However, the maintenance of the former federal highway B 310 in the city of Freistadt is taken over by the Neumarkt autobahn police and is therefore outside the area of ​​responsibility of the local police. The city also has its own city ​​police with two employees who are posted in the town hall.

A post office (post office) has existed in the city since 1626 . Around 1891 the office moved from Böhmergasse to Waaggasse and since the 1990s the post office has been located outside the city walls, between the Marianum and the brewery.

A garrison has been located in Freistadt since 1879 , which was first used by the Austro-Hungarian Army , later by the Austrian Armed Forces and between 1938 and 1945 by the Wehrmacht . In 1937 the army moved from Freistadt Castle to the newly built Tilly barracks in the south of the city (around one kilometer south of the Linzertor). After around 300 basic military servants had been trained annually  in this barracks , it has been used for cadre training since 2006 . With the military shooting range in the Zelletau and the garrison training area (GÜPL) Geyer in St. Peter, there are two military training areas in the Freistadt area. At the end of 2015, the Tilly barracks will be closed, among other things, to save money. At the end of January 2015, around 50 war refugees moved into an empty building on the barracks area. The decision to accept the refugees in the barracks was preceded by a controversial discussion. With the platform “Refugees - Welcome to Freistadt”, civil society set a clear signal for the endeavors to welcome refugees in a hospitable manner.

Since 1870 there has been a volunteer fire brigade in Freistadt , which was originally housed in the outer courtyard in the old town. As these rooms became too narrow over time, the fire brigade moved into the building that was now north of the city on the B 310 in 1994. In 2008 the fire brigade had around 100 members and owned eight vehicles and several trailers for fire and technical operations. The company Haberkorn maintains its own company fire brigade .

The district offices of the Chamber of Labor , the Chamber of Agriculture and the Chamber of Commerce are located in Freistadt. The district secretariats of the political parties ÖVP, SPÖ, Greens and FPÖ are also located in Freistadt.


Gymnasium (old building)

Education has a long tradition in Freistadt, a schoolmaster was mentioned in a document as early as 1371 . In 1404 a house was called a school house and in 1543 a Latin school was mentioned for the first time. Today Freistadt is the school center of the district and has primary and secondary school types . For school-age children and adolescents, there are two elementary schools , three secondary schools , a polytechnic school and a general secondary school with two types of school, a grammar school and a grammar school branch . The three-year technical school for economic professions and the agricultural technical school offer two vocational middle schools in Freistadt . In addition, with a commercial academy , a higher technical institute with a focus on logistics and a higher education institute for business professions, there are three higher vocational schools with high school diplomas in the city. These schools are attended by a total of 2,636 students, 1,482 (56%) of whom are women.

There is also a commercial vocational school for bricklayers, carpenters and roofers, the regional music school in the Salzhof cultural center and a school for health and nursing with a diploma, which is located at the Freistadt regional hospital.

For adult education there is a branch of the Volkshochschule Oberösterreich in Freistadt as well as a location of the Vocational Promotion Institute of Upper Austria.

Of the libraries in Freistadt, the largest is that of the rectory. The castle museum contains a small library with historical books and cartographies on the city's history.

Energy and infrastructure

Galgenau waterworks

From 1919 the city was supplied with electricity from the brewery. Between 1921 and 1927 the local network was expanded and in 1922 it was connected to the high-voltage power supply of the Linzer Tramway und Elektrizitäts Gesellschaft (TEG) (today: Linz Strom GmbH ). The city consumed around 34.7 GWh of electrical energy in the 2008 financial year  ; Linz Strom AG supplies around 5200 customer systems in the city area (as of September 30, 2007).

The drinking water supply in the urban area is owned by the municipality. The population needs around 1500  cubic meters of drinking water per day, three quarters of which is obtained from the Galgenau deep well , near the southern municipal boundary. The water supply center and a water treatment plant are located in the Galgenau waterworks . The remaining quarter is fed in from twelve spring catchments northeast of the city (municipality of Grünbach : districts of Schlag and Rauchödt). The supply is secured with several elevated tanks in Graben, on Oswalder Straße and in Galgenau. With a water hardness of 3.4 ° German hardness, urban water is considered to be soft water, the pH value is around 8.0, which means that the water is basic . There is a large groundwater reserve in the Jaunitzsenke to ensure water quality .

The city is supplied with natural gas by OÖ Ferngas GmbH. The biomass cogeneration plant has since the last expansion in 2008 with an output of 4000  kW and supplies all public buildings and 600 homes.

Antenna TV reception from the Lichtenberg transmitter is very limited in the entire city due to the city's location in a valley. Therefore, a transmitter near Grünbach , five kilometers northeast of the city, supports the supply. Is sent Freeview on channel 43 with 900 watts. By Freistädter companies electric Pachner is cable TV available in the densely populated urban area.

In Freistadt, waste is disposed of by the Freistadt District Waste Association. Biological, plastic and residual waste are collected regularly, and there is also a waste material collection center and a composting facility for biowaste. The remaining waste is transported to Linz Service GmbH and processed there mechanically or biologically .

With four neighboring communities (Rainbach, Grünbach, Waldburg and Lasberg), the city operates the cleanliness association Freistadt and the surrounding area. The joint sewage treatment plant is located in the municipality of Freistadt near the Feldaist and was expanded to a population equivalent of 30,000 in 2008 .

The Freistadt weather station is located on the site of the sewage treatment plant and is operated by ZAMG .


Traffic routes and settlement area

Freistadt has been connected to Austria's high-ranking road network since autumn 2015. The ASFINAG built the motorway-like mühlviertler schnellstraße S 10 between Unterweitersdorf (motorway end of A 7) and rainbach im mühlkreis which is guided past the east city. Three junctions are planned in the Freistadt area: Freistadt Süd, Grünbach / Sandl (B 38) and Freistadt Nord. After three years of construction, the Freistadt bypass was opened to traffic on November 15, 2014.

In Freistadt, Mühlviertler Strasse B 310 and Böhmerwald Strasse B 38 cross two state roads with priority. The B 310 ( E 55 ) leads from Unterweitersdorf to the state border at the former Wullowitz border crossing (in the municipality of Leopoldschlag ) to the Czech Republic and crosses the city from south to north. The B 38 runs from Horn to the state border at the former Wegscheid border crossing to Germany and runs from east to west through Freistadt. In addition, three state roads lead away from Freistadt: to Hirschbach (L 1498) in the west, to Lasberg and Kefermarkt (L 1476) in the southeast and to St. Oswald (L 579) in the east. There were five personal injury accidents in the municipality in 2009, most of them in the entire district (13 personal injury accidents).

railway station
Stifterplatz, the city's central bus hub

Since the early 1990s made especially along the B 310 device biking trails . In addition, cycle paths were marked in Zemannstrasse and in the old town; on some streets driving against the one-way is allowed. Large areas away from the main thoroughfares are traffic-calmed as a 30 km / h zone . Nevertheless, cycling in Freistadt is only of secondary importance and the city is not on any Upper Austrian cycle path.

Since the early 2000s, plans to convert Eisengasse and the adjacent Höllplatz into a pedestrian zone have been discussed in the local council. So far, no majority has been achieved for the facility. The affected businesses in Eisengasse are against this project. Freistadt is one of the four Upper Austrian municipalities in which the center zone, a mixture of pedestrian zone and Tempo 30 zone, is being introduced.

Between 1832 and 1872 the horse-drawn railway Budweis – Linz – Gmunden passed the city around four kilometers southwest. However, Freistadt did not have its own station. Only with the construction of the Summerau Railway , which originally ran from St. Valentin to Budweis in 1872 , did Freistadt receive a railway connection. In 1873 the line to Linz was opened and Freistadt was connected to the state capital Linz . The station, which is now operated by the Austrian Federal Railways (ÖBB), is located around three kilometers southwest of the city center. In the current timetable (2015) there are direct connections to Linz, Prague and Budweis .

A city ​​bus operated in Freistadt from 1994 , which has been discontinued. Starting from Freistadt there is a dense network of bus connections that are operated by ÖBB-Postbus GmbH within the framework of the Upper Austrian Transport Association . There are connections to the other places in the Freistadt district and the Urfahr-Umgebung district , to Linz and Lower Austria ( Gmünd and Horn). There is an international bus connection to Dolní Dvořiště / Unterhaid .

Freistadt gives the radio beacon FRE an international air route its name. The radio beacon itself is, however, about 30 km further south-west in the municipality of Herzogsdorf .

A few kilometers to the west is the small Freistadt airfield , built in 1964 . This has a grass runway with a length of 595 meters and has the IACO identification LOLF. The closest international airport is Linz Airport in Hörsching, around 53 kilometers to the south-west.

Health and Social

LKH Freistadt with a new extension

As in the entire district of Freistadt, the rescue service is provided by the Red Cross . The district office is located in Freistadt, from which the city and the surrounding communities are looked after.

The state hospital Freistadt has 176 beds and two institutes and is owned by the Upper Austrian Health and Spitals AG (GESPAG). It comprises four specialist departments: surgery , gynecology and obstetrics , internal medicine and trauma surgery . In August 2008, a psychiatric day clinic and an enlarged outpatient department went into operation.

For care for the elderly, Freistadt offers a district seniors' home and a mobile hospice team . The outpatient hospice service advises on palliative care offers and offers bereavement support .

There is also a branch of the ÖGK in Freistadt with an attached dental clinic.


City Hall Freistadt

Community representation

From 1286 there was a city ​​judge in Freistadt , in 1354 the advice and unity of the citizens and in 1388 Jakob Megerlein were mentioned as the first mayor of the city. As in other cities of the time, there was the Inner Council, the actual city council. The eight members were trade citizens and met twice a week. Later came the Outer Council, the representative body of the general citizenship, in which the craftsmen were represented.

The city's self-government with annual mayor, judge and council elections and regular renewal of the city rules ended in 1600. From this point on, the influence of the princes ( Habsburgs ) became more and more noticeable, so that ultimately the mayors, city judges and council members only with the consent of the Governor and the election commissioners appointed by him could be elected. With the magistrate's constitution of 1783, the magistrate, consisting of the mayor and councilors, replaced the old city council and the city judge as the authority. This magistrate constitution remained in place until 1848/49 and was replaced by the municipal code that is still valid today . The mayors and city councilors, freely elected since 1849, were and are representatives of political currents. In the years 1934 to 1945, the corporate state and the Nazi era , no free and secret municipal council elections took place.

The municipal council and mayoral elections take place every six years, at the same time as the state elections. In 1945 the ÖVP achieved an absolute majority of 55.7%. The second strongest party was the SPÖ with 42.1%, followed by the KPÖ with 2.2%. Since 1949 the municipal council has consisted of at least three parties, the ÖVP , the SPÖ and the WdU (hereinafter: FPÖ ). In 1985 the Citizens List Group for Environmental Protection and Transparency (GUT) was elected to the local council for the first time and is currently the third largest party. In the 2009 elections, the BZÖ made it to the municipal council for the first time. Since then, five parties have been represented in the Free City Council.

The municipal council consists of 37 councils, from whose ranks the council, consisting of nine executive councilors , is elected. The mayor is also a member of the city council.

Local council election results since 1945

The 2015 municipal council election with a turnout of 81.6% resulted in the following result:

Party /
Seats on the
local council
ÖVP 1) 44.5% -7.0% 17th -3
SPÖ 21.4% −5.5% 8th −2
GREEN 10.9% + 10.9% 4th +4
FPÖ 13.3% + 6.2% 5 +3
WIFF 9.90% + 9.9% 3 +3

1) The ÖVP entered the list of Mayor Mag. Christian Jachs - ÖVF.


In 1388 Jakob Megerlein was mentioned as the first mayor of Freistadt. Since the March Revolution in 1848, the Conservative Party, the Christian Social Party (CS) and finally the Austrian People's Party (ÖVP) have all democratically elected mayors of Freistadt, with the mayor being directly elected since 1997.

In the 2015 municipal council elections, Mayor Christian Jachs (ÖVP) , who has been in office since October 23, 2007, was confirmed in office with 57.2% of the votes. On August 16, 2016, Jachs died of cancer. On December 4, 2016, the previous deputy mayor Elisabeth Paruta-Teufer was elected mayor with 57.7% of the votes. A special law made it possible, as an exception, to hold the federal presidential election (postponed repetition of the runoff) on the same day .

City finances

In 2007 Freistadt had 17 million euros in income and 18.8 million euros in expenditure; Nevertheless, a balanced balance could be achieved, as the state of Upper Austria granted a grant. The largest sources of income are the income shares from the financial equalization with 5 million euros and the municipal tax with 1.7 million euros. Freistadt is the financially strongest municipality in the district and ranks 77th (2006: 70th) in Upper Austria (438 municipalities). The community debt per capita amounted to 1,596 euros, 80 euros less than the average for the province of Upper Austria and around 450 euros less than the district average.

Town twinning

Freistadt maintains a town partnership with the South Bohemian town of Kaplice ( Kaplitz ). This partnership, which has existed since 1994, aims to establish cooperation in the socio-cultural and sporting fields.


In 1982 Freistadt took over the sponsorship of the German Bohemia of the city and parish Rosenberg in the Bohemian Forest (Czech Rožmberk nad Vltavou ), which were expelled on the basis of the Beneš decrees . Every year from Corpus Christi day until the following Sunday (four days) there is a Rosenberger meeting in Freistadt .

coat of arms

Coat of arms of Freistadt.svg

Official description of the municipal coat of arms:

"A silver bar in red."

The red-white-red shield is the symbol of the sovereign city rule at the time. The Babenberg Duke Friedrich II had had the binding shield in the seal since 1230 , which was subsequently adopted by King Ottokar II Přemysl and finally the Habsburgs as the house coat of arms in order to document themselves as the successors of the Babenbergs.

Since 1282 the city ​​coat of arms has been demonstrably in the seal with the legend SIGILLVM. CIVIVM. DE. VREIINSTAT used. In the middle of the 14th century, the property of the city was marked with the red, white and red sign. Such a sign can be seen on the Böhmertor, a gate tower in the north of the old town. From September 10, 1821, the imperial double-headed eagle , with the red-white-red city coat of arms as a breast shield, was used.

At the request of the municipal administration, Emperor Franz Josef I changed the coat of arms on September 10, 1907 . The coat of arms, divided by blue and gold, showed at the top an angel with silver wings and a golden wreath of stars around his head, who was holding a gold cross and a green palm branch. Below the coat of arms showed a black double-headed eagle with a red-white-red breast shield. On 24 July 1939 the Gau was the Provincial Governor Oberdonau back the original - introduced coat of arms - today.


The city of Freistadt has so far awarded honorary citizenship to six former mayors after their term of office ended . As the first mayor, Emanuel Lechner (term of office 1879–1883) was granted this honor on July 25, 1900. The composer Franz Neuhofer (1870–1949) from Freetown was also granted honorary citizenship. His main occupation was a choir director, teacher and cathedral organist in Linz, where Neuhofer also died.

Many medieval buildings are due to the master stonemason Mathes Klayndl (around 1440–1510). Although numerous buildings were destroyed by the two great city fires, his architecture can be admired at the Linzertor, Böhmertor and many other buildings in and around Freistadt.

The master dyer and painter Aloys Zötl (1803–1887) was born in the city. Rediscovered decades after his death, he was added to the list of Surrealists avant la lettre by André Breton . Zötl is the only "officially" recognized Austrian surrealist .

Edward Samhaber was born in Freistadt in 1846 . He was a literary historian , poet , playwright and high school teacher in Freistadt. There is a memorial plaque on the town hall for the city's son who died in Linz in 1910.

Five municipal council members or mayors from Freistadt were or are active as members of the Austrian National Council. The first was Franz Haunschmidt from 1945 to 1962. Later the federal civil servant Norbert Kapeller (ÖVP) represented constituency 4E (Mühlviertel) in the National Council from December 20, 2002 to March 14, 2011 and most recently Johanna Jachs (ÖVP, since 2017). Politicians from Freistadt have been regularly represented in the Upper Austrian Parliament since it was founded. Currently, Johann Affenzeller (SPÖ) and Gabriele Lackner-Strauss (ÖVP), two politicians living in Freistadt, and Maria Christine Jachs (ÖVP), a member of parliament who was born in Freistadt, are active in the Upper Austrian state parliament.

The athlete Martin Pröll (* 1981) starts for the SK VÖEST club in Linz and took part in the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens . He did not qualify for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing . His disciplines are the 3000 meter obstacle course and the 5000 meter long distance. He is multiple Austrian champion over 3000 meters obstacle. With Günter Daschill, the city provided a participant in the 2004 Paralympics in Athens.

The composer Hannes Raffaseder (* 1970) and the writers Andrea Winkler (* 1972) and Brigitte Schwaiger (1949–2010) were born in Freistadt.


  • Othmar Rappersberger: Freistadt - jewelry box of the Mühlviertel . Kunstverlag Hofstetter, Ried iI 1992.
  • Othmar Rappersberger, Peter Knoll: Freistadt then and now in words and pictures . Publication P No 1, 1993, ISBN 3-900878-97-8 .
  • Fritz Fellner, Peter Himmetsberger: Resident in Freistadt: A piece of city history . Publication P No 1, 1991, ISBN 3-900878-68-4 .
  • Herta Awecker, Franz Schober, Benno Ulm : Freistadt: The romantic city in the Mühlviertel and its surroundings . Plöchl-Druck, Freistadt 1955.


  • Stadtgemeinde Freistadt (Ed.): Freistädter Geschichtsblätter . Plöchl-Druck, Freistadt, Vol. 1–11, 1950– ongoing.


  • Tax Office Freistadt , files, manuscripts, 1787–1871, Upper Austrian Provincial Archives (OÖLA).
  • Federal Monuments Office Austria (Ed.): Dehio-Handbuch - Upper Austria Mühlviertel . Verlag Berger, Horn / Vienna 2003, ISBN 978-3-85028-362-5 , S. o. A.

Web links

Commons : Freistadt  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files
Wiktionary: Freistadt  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations


Individual evidence

  1. Austrian Map Online: Austrian Map start page
  2. Geological Federal Institute: ( page no longer available , search in web archives: report on geological recordings on page 16, FreistadtInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (As of May 20, 2008; PDF, 3.7 MB)@1@ 2Template: Dead Link /  
  3. Statistics Austria: Population on January 1st, 2020 by locality (area status on January 1st, 2020) , ( CSV )
  4. ^ Michael Rademacher: German administrative history from the unification of the empire in 1871 to the reunification in 1990. Free city district. (Online material for the dissertation, Osnabrück 2006).
  5. ^ Territorial changes in Germany and German administered areas 1874–1945: District town of Freistadt , accessed on June 25, 2012.
  6. DORIS: Information on Upper Austria (as of April 2, 2008)
  7. Property database Regional information : Political community: Freistadt (as of January 1, 2008)
  8. ^ ZAMG: Climate data from Austria 1971–2000 (as of April 9, 2008)
  9. ^ Climate Alliance: Freistadt , accessed on March 31, 2009.
  10. ^ Johann Loserth, Grete Mecenseffy and Robert Friedmann: Freistadt (Upper Austria, Austria) . In: Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online
  11. ^ Fritz Fellner: “The city within the city. The prisoner of war camp in Freistadt 1914-1918. ”In:“ Oberösterreichische Heimatblätter . ”Issue 1, Linz 1989, p. 12, online (PDF) in the forum
  12. ^ New Free Austria - Freistädter Geschichtsblätter, Volume 11, pp. 5–157.
  13. ^ Edmund Merl: Refugee problem in the border region from the book "Occupation time in the Mühlviertel", OLV Verlag.
  14. Nora Bruckmüller: When Meryl Streep played for "Holocaust" in Freistadt , from January 25, 2019, accessed on January 28, 2019.
  15. ^ The treasure trove from the Fuchsenhof: The find ( Memento from June 5, 2008 in the Internet Archive ), as of July 21, 2008.
  16. Platform flood: ( page no longer available , search in web archives: flood 2002, p. 63. )@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /
  17. a b c Klein : Historical local dictionary . Ed .: VID. Upper Austria part 1, p. 64 ( online document - oD [update]).
  18. Statistics Austria: Population development 1869 - 2011 (PDF).
  19. a b 2001 population census: population development (download as PDF; 35 kB)
  20. Statistics Austria: Population and components of population development (PDF; 8 kB)
  21. 2001 census: population development Engerwitzdorf (PDF; 35 kB)
  22. a b c d e Statistics Austria: Population level and structure (PDF)
  23. ^ Evangeliumsgemeinde Freistadt: Who we are , as of July 20, 2008.
  24. ^ Islamic youth organization Freistadt: Contact information , as of April 20, 2011.
  25. Jehovah's Witnesses: Structure , as of July 22, 2008.
  26. Eveline Brugger, et al .: "History of the Jews in Austria", Ueberreuter, 2006, ISBN 3-8000-7159-2 , p. 273.
  27. ^ Parish Freistadt on
  28. Deanery Freistadt on
  29. ^ City of Freistadt: Brauhausgaleri ' , accessed on March 24, 2009.
  30. ^ Exhibition hall Freistadt: Architecture ( Memento of September 27, 2009 in the Internet Archive ) (as of May 16, 2008)
  31. Freistädter TIPS: Current edition ( Memento of August 4, 2008 in the Internet Archive ), accessed on May 13, 2008.
  32. MF1plus: Business , accessed on 9 May, 2008.
  33. Messe Mühlviertel: History (as of April 8, 2008)
  34. Konvers GmbH: ( page no longer available , search in web archives: homepage for the fair ) (as of April 16, 2012)@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /
  35. To Ludwig GmbH: Homepage of the Oktoberfest (as of November 16, 2014)
  36. Holidays in Austria: Weekly markets  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (As of June 16, 2008)@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /  
  37. Municipality of Freistadt: Market Regulation 2006 (PDF; 68 kB)
  38. State Exhibition 2013: Old Traces, New Paths (as of February 1, 2013)
  39. Municipality of Freistadt: Sports clubs in Freistadt (as of May 20, 2008)
  40. Sport Union: Membership at YHV 2012
  41. ^ Fistball: Sportunion Freistadt - Section Fistball , as of April 29, 2011
  42. ^ Sportverein Freistadt: History ( Memento from December 1, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) (as of March 14, 2011)
  43. SV Freistadt: ( page no longer available , search in web archives: table / results ) (as of June 26, 2008)@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /
  44. Municipality of Freistadt: Economy (as of May 8, 2008)
  45. Upper Austria News: Most of the new companies in Freistadt (as of February 21, 2008)
  46. Upper Austria News: Last kitchen in Freistadt comes off the assembly line (as of July 16, 2007)
  47. DORIS: General Measurements ( Memento of October 29, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) (as of April 17, 2008)
  48. ↑ Basic contribution statistics of the GKK OÖ and AK OÖ (excluding civil servants, apprentices and marginal employees); made available by AK Freistadt.
  49. Upper Austrian Chamber of Commerce and State of Upper Austria: Purchasing Power Flows in Upper Austria ( Memento from June 15, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 1.1 MB)
  50. Upper Austrian Chamber of Commerce: ( page no longer available , search in web archives: trade brunch in the Freistadt district ) (as of February 9, 2007)@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /
  51. Upper Austrian Chamber of Labor: Labor Market Info July 2009 ( Memento from December 31, 2009 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 56 kB)
  52. Upper Austrian Chamber of Labor: Labor Market Info 2008  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF; 84 kB)@1@ 2Template: Dead Link /  
  53. Municipality of Freistadt: Current from the town hall, 02/2007, p. 2 , (PDF, 2.4 MB)
  54. ↑ Chamber of Labor Freistadt: Data on the situation of employees in the Freistadt district, p. 6 (PDF)
  55. ^ TMG: Leading companies in Upper Austria ( memento of April 10, 2009 in the Internet Archive ) accessed on April 29, 2009
  56. 100 new jobs by October: Greiner Bio-One sets important economic impetus with an investment of millions (as of March 4, 2009)
  57. ^ INKOBA Region Freistadt. Retrieved May 20, 2020 .
  58. Written communication from the Free City Regional Chamber of Commerce (as of April 1, 2007)
  59. 2001 census: agricultural and forestry holdings and areas by type of occupation (PDF; 15 kB)
  60. DORIS: ( page no longer available , search in web archives: agricultural statisticsInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (As of June 16, 2008)@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /  
  61. ( page no longer available , search in web archives: tourism statistics ), accessed on February 23, 2011.@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /
  62. International Police Association: The municipal police in Austria (as of May 13, 2008)
  63. Hoffmann Alfred (Ed.) "Austrian Town Book Bd1: Upper Austria". Vienna, 1968, p. 143
  64. Freistadt fire brigade: homepage (as of May 12, 2008)
  65. DORIS: ( page no longer available , search in web archives: school statistics by school typeInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (As of April 17, 2008)@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /  
  66. Vocational School Freistadt: apprenticeships (as of April 24, 2008)
  67. ^ Elisabeth Kreuzwieser: Acetylene lighting - an alternative to coal gas. 2006. Website 526 in the forum
  68. ^ Information from an employee of Linz Strom AG by email
  69. a b Information from a city employee by email
  70. ^ Federal Chancellery: Entire legal regulation for the Jaunitztal - Freistadt groundwater reserve , accessed on September 26, 2008.
  71. Frequency lists : DVB-T , accessed on August 10, 2014.
  72. Municipality of Freistadt: Current from the town hall, No. 2, 2007, p. 7. (PDF; 2.4 MB)
  73. ZAMG measuring network: Weather stations , accessed on August 10, 2014.
  74. ^ P. 10 Mühlviertel expressway Freistadt North - Rainbach North. ASFINAG website, accessed on October 23, 2017 .
  75. ^ S10: Freistadt bypass was opened , accessed on November 11, 2014.
  76. ( page can no longer be accessed , search in web archives: Province of Upper Austria - traffic: accident statistics 09 - district of Freistadt ), year 2009 (PDF)@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /
  77. Municipality of Freistadt: Current from the town hall (PDF; 1.2 MB), No. 03/2004, p. 4.
  78. TIPS Freistadt: ( page no longer available , search in web archives: TIPS, edition March 5th, 2008, p. 21. )@1@ 2Template: Dead Link /
  79. OÖ Nachrichten: Four municipalities will soon allow cars to drive in pedestrian zones , accessed on April 28, 2009.
  80. Freistadt Airfield: Airfield , accessed on November 11, 2014.
  81. ^ LKH Freistadt: Welcome to the State Hospital Freistadt! , accessed May 9, 2008.
  82. ^ Hospice movement in the district of Freistadt: Home , accessed on May 13, 2008.
  83. Municipal elections percentages: ( Page no longer available , search in web archives: Municipal election FreistadtInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (As of April 25, 2008)@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /  
  84. ^ Province of Upper Austria, results of the 2015 elections. Accessed on May 13, 2019 .
  85. Mayor Christian Jachs has passed away; in
  86. New ÖVP mayor in Freistadt, December 4, 2016, accessed December 4, 2016.
  87. ( page no longer available , search in web archives: general budget 2007 for Freistadt ), accessed on March 5, 2009.@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /
  88. ^ Province of Upper Austria, regional history: Coat of arms of the municipality of Freistadt (as of July 14, 2008)
  89. Bookstore Walther König: Aloys Zötl or Die Animalisierung der Kunst ( Memento of November 13, 2007 in the Internet Archive ), as of July 17, 2008
  90. Norbert Kapeller. Austrian Parliament, July 14, 2008, accessed on July 23, 2013 .
  91. State of Upper Austria, Landtag, MPs: ( Page no longer available , search in web archives: Johann Affenzeller (SPÖ)Info: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (As of July 14, 2008)@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /  
  92. ^ State of Upper Austria, Landtag, MPs: Gabriele Lackner-Strauss, Kommerzialratsin (ÖVP) (as of July 14, 2008)
  93. Province of Upper Austria, Landtag, MPs: ( Page no longer available , search in web archives: Maria Christine Jachs (ÖVP) ) (as of July 14, 2008)@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /
  94. ^ Johann Pammer, Upper Austrian Provincial Archives: Tax Office Archives Freistadt . Linz 1996 (PDF; 30 kB)
This article was added to the list of excellent articles on August 7, 2008 in this version .