|coat of arms||Germany map|
|Height :||194 m above sea level NHN|
|Area :||152.18 km 2|
|Residents:||93,125 (Dec. 31, 2019)|
|Population density :||612 inhabitants per km 2|
|Primaries :||0365, 036695|
|License plate :||G|
|Community key :||16 0 52 000|
|LOCODE :||DE GEA|
|City structure:||40 districts|
City administration address :
|Lord Mayor :||Julian Vonarb (independent)|
|Location of the city of Gera in Thuringia|
Gera is an independent university town in the east of Thuringia . After the state capital Erfurt , Gera ranks second in terms of area and third behind Jena in terms of population in the Free State of Thuringia. Gera is located in the north of the Vogtland on the White Elster in the eastern Thuringian hill country at an altitude of about 200 meters and belongs to the metropolitan region of Central Germany . Leipzig is about 60 kilometers to the north, Erfurt 80 kilometers to the west, Zwickau about 40 kilometers to the southeast and Chemnitz about 70 kilometers to the east.
Gera is of historical importance as the state capital of the Principality of Reuss Younger Line (1848 to 1918) and of the People's State of Reuss (1918 to 1920). With the onset of industrialization in the middle of the 19th century, the city experienced great economic and population growth . At the heyday of the fabric and cloth industry, Gera was one of the richest cities in Germany. Over 100 city villas, some of which are very important (for example Villa Schulenburg ), bear witness to the splendor and wealth of bygone times. The city also became a transport hub during the 19th century, as numerous railway lines meet at the main train station .
During the Second World War , from May 1944 to April 1945, Gera was partially destroyed by air raids . After the founding of the GDR , the city became the seat of the newly created district of Gera in 1952 . Since 1990 it has been part of Thuringia again for administrative purposes and is one of three regional centers here . The city is home to the University of Cooperative Education Gera-Eisenach (2016 Cooperative Education Gera ) and the private SRH University of Health Gera and was the venue of the 2007 Federal Garden Show . Since January 2017, the city officially bears the title "University City".
Gera lies in the east of the Free State of Thuringia in the valley of the river Weisse Elster and is almost completely enclosed by the district of Greiz ; in the north the city borders on Saxony-Anhalt . The border with Saxony is not far either. At the southern city limits (near Wünschendorf ) the river emerges from its narrow valley on the eastern edge of the Thuringian Slate Mountains and flows into a wide valley landscape in which the city of Gera spreads. While the western edge of the valley drops relatively steeply, the eastern edge rises gradually. In addition, the outskirts of the city in the west and south-east of the urban area are cut by the valleys of numerous smaller tributaries of the White Elster, such as the Gessenbach .
Gera is between(bed of the White Elster) and 354 m (near Gera-Falka in the extreme southeast). The height of Geras is mostly indicated the height of the market place.
With the Gera city forest in the west of the city area, Gera has the largest contiguous forest area of all Thuringian cities. Another large forest area - an extension of the woodland - is located in the far northwest of the city. In the northeast - behind Aga - is the Zeitzer Forest (Saxony-Anhalt).
The main types of rock represented are limestone and red sandstone . The oldest rock types are found in the east of the city and tend to taper to the west. On a line between Niebra , Kaimberg and Naulitz there are mainly Devonian slates . This is followed by two Rotliegend zones , especially around Collis and Laasen . While Zechstein formations are predominantly to be found on the eastern slopes of the actual core city , the area beyond the Elstertal in the west of the city is characterized by the Lower Buntsandstein . In the extreme south-east of the city, the red sandstone area runs across the Elstertal to Falka and further towards Letzendorf and Pohlen . In the north of the urban area there are small deposits of brown coal , which were mined in the 19th century. Nevertheless, the red sandstone predominates here on the slopes to the east of the Elster, while the flat areas are mostly covered with loess .
- in the district of Greiz (Thuringia): Pölzig , Hirschfeld , Brahmenau , Schwaara and Korbußen (all administrative community Am Brahmetal ), Ronneburg , Kauern , Hilbersdorf , Linda b. Weida , Endschütz and Wünschendorf (all administrative community Wünschendorf / Elster ), Zedlitz , Hundhaupten and Saara (all administrative community Münchenbernsdorf ), Kraftsdorf (unitary community), Hartmannsdorf and Bad Köstritz
- in the Saale-Holzland-Kreis (Thuringia): Silbitz ( administrative community Heideland-Elstertal-Schkölen )
- in the Burgenlandkreis (Saxony-Anhalt): Wetterzeube and Gutenborn ( Verbandsgemeinde Droyßiger-Zeitzer Forst )
The urban area is divided into 40 districts , which are combined into 12 statistical districts. Some of the districts are also localities or form a locality with other districts. In Gera there are 15 localities with their own local council and a local mayor .
In addition to the old town, which is demarcated by the remains of the city wall and the alley behind the wall , the city center also includes the east quarter and is bordered by the Weißen Elster in the west and by the main train station in the northwest. In the east, the contiguous urban area already closes off with the Leumnitz district bordering the eastern quarter . In the south, on the east bank of the White Elster, the city center merges into the Pforten district in the winter garden area ; to the south is the Zwötzen, which is structurally separated by floodplains and railway embankments . From Zwötzen, a thin, built-up strip leads along the salt road to Liebschwitz , which belonged to Saxony until 1928. West of the White Elster, across from the city center, begins the elongated district of Debschwitz , which stretches along Wiesestrasse one and a half kilometers south to the prefabricated building district that was built in the 1970s and is still the most populous district of Lusan . The contiguous urban area is completed by Zeulsdorf in the south- west and Röppisch in the south . The Untermhaus district, located on both sides of the White Elster, extends northwest of the main train station and , due to its proximity to the former royal residence, is one of the most elegant districts of Gera. To the east of the railroad tracks, Bieblach, with its distinctive residential developments from the 1950s and 1960s, and Tinz , which extends to the motorway and consists of industrial and commercial areas , are connected to the north of the city center . Bieblach is followed by the village of Roschütz and the Bieblach-Ost prefabricated building area from the 1980s; north of the motorway, the contiguous urban area is closed off with Langenberg .
The average annual precipitation from 1961 to 1990 at the Gera-Leumnitz measuring station is 591 mm and is therefore below the German average, except in April. The driest month is February, with the most rainfall in June and August.
The name Gera originally referred to the section of the Elstertal where the city is located today. It was probably created before the Migration Period and was adopted by the Slavs who had lived there since the 8th century . In 995 the name Gera was first mentioned in a border description. In 999 the provincia Gera came into the possession of the Quedlinburg monastery .
In 1209, the Quedlinburg abbess Sophia I von Brehna appointed Heinrich II “the rich” von Weida (* around 1164/1165; † around 1209) from the dynasty of the Weida bailiffs to be the administrator of the area, which gave him the official title of Vogt , which was then transferred to his descendants as a family name. While his older son Heinrich III. the dominions Weida and Ronneburg received, the second son, Heinrich IV. "the middle" († 1249/1250) got the bailiwick of Gera with the care of Reichenfels and the city of Plauen. In 1238 he called himself “Vogt von Gera”. His two sons founded the lines of the Bailiffs von Gera and the Bailiffs von Plauen . Later there were numerous inheritance divisions. In 1562, after the bailiffs of Gera died out, Gera fell to the Princely House of Reuss , which descended from the bailiffs of Plauen. Gera thus became the state capital of the Principality of Reuss younger line .
After a settlement of the same name was established in the center of the Gera area in the 12th century, it was granted town charter in the early 13th century (before 1237). At first the city developed slowly. In 1450 it was almost completely destroyed in the Saxon Civil War.
From 1564 Gera was the royal seat of the younger Reuss line . This time meant a boom for Gera, in which the textile industry had gained in importance since the 15th century. Under the sovereign Heinrich Posthumus Reuss the importance of the city increased further. In 1686 and 1780 the city was largely destroyed by fires.
In the 19th century Gera developed into an industrial center. In 1882 Oscar Tietz founded the shop with the money of his rich uncle Hermann Tietz , which over the years would become one of the most successful department store chains - Hertie . Ten years later, in 1892, the Gera tram started operating.
After the abdication of the last prince in the November Revolution of 1918, Gera came to the state of Thuringia in 1920 and formed its largest city.
→ Main article: Air raids on Gera
During the Second World War , from May 1944 to April 1945, Gera experienced a total of ten air raids by the American Air Force . The heaviest attack took place on April 6, 1945, and large parts of the city fell victim to it. A total of 514 people were killed in the attacks.
As of April 14, 1945, Gera, like the rest of Thuringia, was first occupied by the US Army , then by the Soviets from July 2, 1945 and thus became part of the GDR in 1949 . In 1952 it became the district capital .
Gera was a focus of the popular uprising on June 17, 1953 , which was overthrown by the declaration of a state of emergency with the use of Soviet tanks.
During the GDR era, Gera became a major city through uranium ore mining near Ronneburg, and in 1989 it had the highest population in its history with around 135,000 people. After the reunification , the population fell rapidly and has been below the 100,000 mark since 2009, making Gera a " large medium-sized town ".
In 2005 and 2009 the city won gold in the national competition “ Our city is in bloom ”. From April 27, 2007 to October 14, 2007 the Federal Garden Show 2007 took place in Gera and Ronneburg . It was the first Federal Horticultural Show that took place at two locations at the same time. There were many changes in the cityscape in connection with the Federal Garden Show. In November 2006, the tram line 1 from Untermhaus to Zwötzen went into operation. Gera's historic Hofwiesenpark , the kitchen garden as well as the adjoining orangery and the theater were redesigned or modernized and handed over to their intended use immediately before the Federal Garden Show.
According to official data from the 2011 census , 9.9 percent of Gera's residents were Protestant and 2.6 percent Catholic at that time. 87.4 percent did not belong to either of the two major Christian denominations - the highest figure among all rural districts and urban districts in Germany.
The population of the city of Gera initially belonged to the diocese of Naumburg . Quedlinburg Abbey issued a church ordinance for the city before 1200. Gera was the seat of a deanery within the Archdeaconate Zeitz. In 1533 the Reformation was introduced, after which the city was almost exclusively a Protestant city for many centuries, with the Lutheran creed predominating. The church shared the fortunes of the rulers of Reuss : The small "Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Principality of Reuss Younger Line", whose seat was in Gera, merged with six other regional churches in Thuringia to form the "Thuringian Evangelical Church", from which later the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Thuringia developed. Gera has been part of the merged Evangelical Church in Central Germany since 2009 . Within this regional church, Gera is the seat of a regional bishop for the provost district of Gera-Weimar as well as the seat of a superintendent for the parish of Gera. The 13 Evangelical Lutheran parishes and parishes that exist today all belong to the Superintendentur Gera.
In the 19th century, Catholics returned to the city. In 1894 they again founded their own parish and built the Church of St. Elisabeth, to which the Catholics of neighboring towns and communities also belonged. As early as 1903, the factory hall at Nicolaistraße 4 in Gera was converted into a church and consecrated. The church received Saint Elisabeth of Thuringia as the patron saint . 100 years after the inauguration of the “St. Elisabeth “Church, the structure of the former factory hall could no longer be renovated. So the community decided to purchase a nearby plot of land with a Wilhelminian-style community building that could be renovated and the building site for a new church. After complex renovations, the parish hall was inaugurated in November 2000; the newly built church was consecrated in November 2003. Today, in addition to the main church, the parish of St. Elisabeth also includes the chapels of St. Jakobus in Gera-Langenberg and the Birth of Mary in Ronneburg . There is also the parish of St. Maximilian Kolbe in Gera with the church of the same name in Lusan , consecrated in 1985 . Today the city is the seat of a deanery within the diocese of Dresden-Meißen .
In addition, there are also congregations that belong to free churches , including the Evangelical Free Church Congregation ( Baptists ), the Evangelical Methodist Church Congregation , the Free Evangelical Congregation , the Adventist Church ( Adventists ), the Evangelical Christian Congregation ( Pentecostal Church ), the Benjamin Church ( Forum Life ) and the Christian Community.
Non-Christian religions are hardly represented in Gera. There is a mosque run by an association and a Buddhist Diamond Way Center . About 500 people belonged to Judaism during the Weimar Republic ; there was a synagogue in the hotel "Kronprinz" on Schülerstrasse and an orthodox synagogue on Hospitalstrasse (today Karl-Liebknecht-Strasse). After 1945, a Jewish community was founded again in Gera, which, however, disbanded after a few years due to the low number of members. Today Gera belongs to the Jewish State Community of Thuringia .
- October 1, 1905: Bieblach
- April 1, 1912: Debschwitz
- January 1, 1919: Lower house with Cuba, which was incorporated in 1897, as well as Pforten , Zwötzen , Leumnitz , Tinz , Milbitz , Thieschitz , Rubitz , Lusan and Oberröppisch (Oberröppisch was removed again on April 1, 1925)
- October 1, 1922: Ernsee and Unterröppisch (Unterröppisch was reunited on April 1, 1925)
- October 1, 1923: Windischenbernsdorf , Frankenthal and Scheubengrobsdorf as well as Töppeln and Laasen (both places were removed again on October 1, 1924)
- 1929: Tinz State Estate
- 1933: Parts of Poris - Lengefeld
- 1935: Cossenforst
- 1936: Hain and Roschütz manors
- July 1, 1950: Dürrenebersdorf , Kaimberg , Langenberg (city), Langengrobsdorf , Liebschwitz , Lietzsch , Poris - Lengefeld , Roschütz , Röppisch , Taubenpreskel , Zeulsdorf and Zschippern
- April 1, 1994: Aga (with Großaga , Kleinaga , Lessen , Reichenbach and Seligenstädt ), Cretzschwitz , Söllmnitz (with Lauenhain and Wernsdorf ), Roben (with Rusitz and stone bridges ), Hermsdorf and Falka (with Großfalka , Kleinfalke , Wüstfalke , Niebra and Otticha )
- July 1, 1994: Röpsen (with Dorna and Negis ), Thränitz (with Collis and Am Stern ), Trebnitz (with Laasen), Hain (with juniper tree and pioneer barracks Gera), Weißig (with Gorlitzsch and Schafpreskel ) and Naulitz, which was reclassified from Ronneburg
The map with the boundaries of the incorporations to Gera shows some deviations.
The city's population exceeded 100,000 in 1959 , making it a major city. Before the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, it reached its highest value of around 135,000. During this time, the Lusan development area was largely completed, and Bieblach-Ost was under construction. The population has been falling rapidly since the early 1990s and in the mid-2010s it was over 90,000. Both the forecasts of the Thuringian State Office for Statistics on the basis of the 12th coordinated population projection, the city of Gera's own population and household forecast for 2009 and the forecast by the Bertelsmann Foundation assume that the population will decrease by a further 15% by 2030, therefore to around 85,000. The population decline is determined far less by emigration than by a birth deficit .
At the head of the city of Gera in the 13th century was a cultetus of the Quedlinburg Abbey , to which the city belonged at the time. In 1306 the Schulzenamt was transferred to the bailiffs and lords of Gera. There is evidence of a council since 1360 . In the 15th century there were several councils, each of which had a mayor. The ruling council took care of the day-to-day administration, the seated council was responsible for the judiciary, and the dormant or old council was called in on important matters. From 1618 there were two colleges, later three again, and towards the end of the 18th century there were two mayors, of whom the legal mayor was appointed by the sovereign. In 1832 Gera received a new city constitution. At the head was a mayor who was appointed by the NSDAP from 1933 . After the Second World War , the Soviet occupiers formed the city council with a lord mayor. There were no free elections in the period of the Soviet occupation zone and the GDR until 1989.
It was not until the municipal elections in 1990 that the body known as the City Council after the reunification of Germany was freely re-elected. The chairman of this body is the “city council chairman”. The committee also initially elected the mayor. Since 1994 this has been elected directly by the people for six years; if no candidate receives an absolute majority in the first ballot, a runoff election will take place between the two best-placed candidates. The first directly elected Lord Mayor was Ralf Rauch (independent; 1994-2006), who was the only one to be re-elected six years later. He was followed by Norbert Vornehm (SPD; 2006–2012), Viola Hahn (independent; 2012–2018) and Julian Vonarb (independent; since 2018).
After the local elections on May 26, 2019 , the 42 seats in the Gera City Council are distributed as follows:
|AfD||28.8 (+28.8)||12 (+12)|
|THE LEFT||18.3 (-13.2)||8 (-5)|
|CDU||12.9 (-11.7)||6 (-4)|
|BSG 1||7.6 (-6.3)||3 (-3)|
|FG 2||6.8 (+6.8)||3 (+3)|
|GREEN||6.7 (+2.2)||3 (+1)|
|SPD||6.4 (-2.9)||3 (-1)|
|FW||3.3 (+3.3)||1 (+1)|
|LA 3||2.9 (+2.9)||1 (+1)|
|FDP||2.7 (+0.3)||1 (± 0)|
|POLITICAL PARTY||2.7 (+2.7)||1 (+1)|
|NPD||0.9 (-2.9)||0 (–2)|
|PIRATES||nk (-2.0)||0 (-1)|
|AfG / FWG 4||nk (-8.0)||0 (-3)|
For a list of the mayors, see Gera town history .
In state elections in Thuringia , Gera is divided into the constituencies Gera I (northern districts) and Gera II (southern districts). Since the state elections in 2004 , Die Linke (or its predecessor party PDS ) has always been able to win both direct mandates.
At the federal level, Gera has been a member of the Bundestag constituency 194 Gera - Greiz - Altenburger Land since the 2017 federal election ; previously it was part of the Bundestag constituency Gera - Jena - Saale-Holzland-Kreis . In the city of Gera, the 2017 federal election had the following result (the results from the entire constituency in italics):
|Political party||Direct candidate||First vote
City of Gera
city of Gera
|The left||Frank Temple||21.8%||20.7%||18.7%||17.4%|
|FREE VOTERS||Günter Brinkmann||2.2%||1.4%||2.1%||1.4%|
|ÖDP / FAMILY||-||-||0.3%||-||0.4%|
|V party³||Lisa Walther||1.0%||0.6%||0.7%||0.4%|
In the federal elections since 1994, the following parties each achieved the best second vote result in the city of Gera:
badges and flags
The coat of arms of the city of Gera is that of the Vögte von Weida , a noble coat of arms with a shield, helmet and crest . Blazon : “On a leaning triangular shield in black a double-tailed, red-armored and tongued golden lion. On the golden bucket helmet in side view with (on both sides) black and gold covers eight fan-shaped arranged green feathers, the right four with notched tip, the left four as peacock feathers with double peacock eyes in a golden border and with a red pupil at the tip and middle. “The lion is the Plauen lion; as a heraldic animal it was adopted by the former territorial lords, the bailiffs of Weida. It can be traced back to the 14th century . The current coat of arms was last established in 1995 in the main statute of the city of Gera.
The flag is black and gold striped lengthways.
Gera maintains city partnerships with the following twelve cities:
- Saint-Denis (France), since 1959, renovated in 1996
- Sliven (Bulgaria), since 1965
- Skierniewice (Poland), since 1965
- Pskov (Russia), since 1969, renewed in 1996
- Pilsen (Czech Republic), since 1970
- Kuopio (Finland), since 1972
- Arnhem (Netherlands), since 1987, renewed in 1991
- Rostov-on-Don (Russia), since 1987
- Nuremberg (Bavaria), since 1988, renewed in 1990 and 1997
- Fort Wayne (Indiana, USA), since 1992
- Timișoara (Romania), since 1998
- Goražde (Bosnia and Herzegovina), since 2002
Culture and sights
Theater and cinema
The stages of the city of Gera merged in 1996 with the Landestheater Altenburg to form the Theater Altenburg-Gera . This has been called Theater & Philharmonie Thuringia since 2006 ; Since then, the Gera venues ( large house with a stage on the park, small theater in the center and TheaterFABRIK Gera) have been referred to as stages of the city of Gera . The term "Theater & Philharmonie" refers to the particularity of the building, in which both the theater and a separate concert hall are housed. Kay Kuntze has been General Director since 2011, and Volker Arnold has been Commercial Director since 2015.
In 1938 there were five different cinemas in Gera, of which the Palasttheater am Amthordurchgang was the largest with 1150 seats for an event. The two cinemas that remained after reunification closed at the end of 1997 when the modern UCI cinema world opened. In November 2014, the Metropol cinema was a cinema reopened.
Larger events take place in the Gera Culture and Congress Center, which opened in 1981, in the city center.
Gera has four municipal museums, all of which are housed in historical buildings.
- The city museum in the former breeding and orphanage , founded in 1878, deals with the city's history. In addition, the city museum operates the historical caves under the Nicolaiberg, where ten of the Gera caves were made accessible to the public between 1986 and 1989.
- The Gera art collection was opened in 1972 in the former princely orangery . In 1991 the Otto-Dix-Haus was added, which had been converted into the second museum of the Gera art collection on the occasion of the painter's 100th birthday.
- The Museum of Natural History has been located in the former Schreiberhaus in the old town since 1956 . The natural history museum also includes cave no. 188 below the house , where mineral exhibitions take place, and the botanical garden .
- The Museum of Applied Art was established in 1984 in the former Ferber house .
There are also some smaller museums and collections owned by private individuals or companies, such as the Tram Museum of Geraer Verkehrsbetrieb GmbH.
The historical center of the city is still the market with the Gera town hall , inaugurated in 1576 , the baroque Simson fountain and the city pharmacy . The so-called Schreibersche Haus on the Nicolaiberg, built in 1686/88 on the foundations of a free house that was destroyed in the civil war in 1450, was the only building that survived the great city fire of 1780. The remains of the city wall with a fortified tower have been preserved at the moat. Due to multiple destruction and the city fires (1450, 1639, 1686, 1780), the growth of the city during industrialization, the bombing of the Second World War and finally the city renovations in the GDR, there are only a few buildings in Gera from the period before the 18th century receive. Since the late 1990s, a large part of the historical building fabric in the city center and in the adjacent districts has been restored.
Well-known historical church buildings in Gera are the Salvatorkirche (Baroque with Art Nouveau interior), the Johanniskirche (Neo-Gothic) and the Trinity Church (Renaissance, Neo-Gothic) in the city center and the Marienkirche (late Gothic) in Untermhaus . Significant sacred buildings in the further outlying districts are the village churches of Langenberg (Romanesque-Gothic), Kaimberg (baroque), Lusan (Romanesque-Gothic) and Alt-Taubenpreskel (Gothic).
On the Hainberg above the Untermhaus district you will find the former Romanesque keep from the 12th century as well as the remains of farm buildings and the courtyard of the former princely residential palace of Reuss younger line ( Osterstein Castle ). From the keep there is a far-reaching view of the city of Gera and the core area of the 2007 Federal Garden Show with the Hofwiesenpark. The Osterstein castle was destroyed in a bomb attack on 6 April 1945th The area with the keep, ruins and a restaurant built in the GDR era developed into a popular excursion destination and is also used for cultural exhibitions. There is a Baroque moated castle from 1745 in Tinz .
The Gera caves are a specialty of Gera . These deep cellars under the actual cellars of the houses in the historic old town were built in the 17th and 18th centuries. This is where the beer brewed by the citizens was stored. According to the city law at the time, brewing rights were linked to property ownership within the city. The caves were not connected to each other and only accessible from the house or cellar above. Later the caves were forgotten. Some of them were used as air raid shelters during World War II and were connected to one another in the course of this.
Gera is known for the high number of villas due to its former importance as an industrial city . They are mainly to be found north and west of the city center in the Untermhaus and Heinrichsgrün districts and in the Berliner Straße / Friedrich-Engels-Straße area. Particularly well known are the house Schulenburg of Henry van de Velde and the villa year .
The 3 Essen of the former Gera-Nord thermal power station were a noticeable building and a memorable landmark for years . By the end of 2010 they were completely demolished. Today a 30 m high facade on the gable end of an eleven-story residential building on Berliner Straße reminds of them.
Approx. 500 m north of the Gera Forest Clinic is the 24 m high Gladitschturm on the Metzhöhe of the vineyard. This octagonal observation tower was built in 1897 by the Gera Beautification Association and offers a 20 m high observation platform, which, however, has not been climbed for several years due to its disrepair.
Parks and gardens
In the Debschwitz district is the Gera zoo, the largest forest zoo in East Thuringia and one of the largest zoos in Thuringia. It shows over 500 animals from over 80 animal species on an area of around 20 hectares. The zoo's attractions are the accessible monkey enclosure and the park railway , a small railway with a length of around 800 m from Martinsgrund station at the entrance to the zoo to the Wolfsgehege station in the upper part of the zoo.
In the course of the Federal Horticultural Show, the Hofwiesenpark, which serves as the main exhibition area, was created, a large, attractive city park close to the center, which also included the former summer pool and Villa Jahr. It was connected to the second exhibition area, the New Ronneburg Landscape , through a band of newly designed green and commercial areas . In addition, the city has other popular inner-city green spaces with the kitchen garden , a baroque pleasure garden between orangery and theater , as well as the dahlia garden , a show garden for dahlias, and the botanical garden.
The large sports facilities in Geras concentrate mainly on the former “Hofwiesen” on the White Elster between the city center and the districts of Heinrichsgrün and Untermhaus. Here you will find the Stadium of Friendship , the Hofwiesenbad (indoor leisure pool), a roller hockey arena and the TC 90 Gera tennis courts, which were completely renovated in 2005. In 2004 a new four-field sports hall was completed, which replaces the old Panndorfhalle . The name was retained.
The summer pool at the southern end of the Hofwiesenpark had to be closed due to dilapidation and was integrated into the exhibition grounds of the 2007 Federal Garden Show. Natural swimming pools are currently only outside the city center in the Kaimberg and Aga districts .
Other smaller sports facilities are spread all over the city. Noteworthy are the traditional stadium am Steg, the riding stadium in Milbitz , the Zwötzener Karl-Harnisch-Stadion and the speed track in the area of the former heating power station.
The leading football club in Geras is the BSG Wismut Gera in the Thuringian League . The most successful club in the city in the past played in the NOFV-Oberliga until 1996 and in the 1999/2000 season , but had to withdraw to the district league in 2003 after bankruptcy proceedings. Since 2008 the first team has played in the Thuringian League again ; In 2015, he was promoted to the league, from which the club withdrew in 2019.
The greatest success in the club's history is to this day the 2nd place of the previous team BSG Gera-Süd , which in the final of the FDGB Cup in 1949 was only barely defeated by Waggonbau Dessau . In 2007, the football department of the club renamed 1. SV Gera joined the newly founded FV Gera Süd . According to a decision by the general meeting on June 3, 2009, the club has started again under the traditional name of BSG Wismut Gera since the beginning of the 2009/10 season.
Until January 2012, another club played temporarily in the NOFV Oberliga with 1. FC Gera 03 . This club was created in 2003 through the merger of the football departments of TSV 1880 Gera-Zwötzen and SV 1861 Liebschwitz . In 2007, the club won the Thuringian State Cup . The stay in the league was short overall, because the history of the club was accompanied by several insolvency applications, which ultimately culminated in a withdrawal of the first men's team during the current 2011/12 season.
The previously successful football club Dynamo Gera withdrew its teams from the game after the 1989/90 season. All other Geras clubs play on the district and city level.
The women's team of FFC Gera represents the city in the highest national league, the Thuringia League. As a merger of the women's football departments of BSG Wismut Gera and 1. FC Gera 03, the team plays in the tradition of TSV Modedruck / 1880 Gera-Zwötzen, which was represented nationwide in the Regionalliga Nordost for many years .
One of the most important sports in Gera has been cycling for many years . Between 1967 and 2001, the city was stage 14 times on the International Peace Tour . Gera also has a cycling track that dates back to 1934. One of the most important road bike races for women, the International Tour of Thuringia, takes place every year in the Geras area . Gera cycling is particularly well-known through numerous world championships and the success of the junior teams (LV Team HFB Gera). Important former racing cyclists such as Olaf Ludwig , Hanka Kupfernagel and Jens Heppner come from the city . With the SSV Gera 1990 , the city still has one of the most successful cycling clubs in the Association of German Cyclists , which can look back on a long tradition.
The Elster Cycle Path runs through the city from south to north. It was severely damaged by the flooding of the White Elster in early June 2013, but is now largely available again in the urban area.
The Gera-Milbitz riding stadium is a center of equestrian sports in Germany. Gera has already hosted the German championships in dressage and show jumping four times.
Gera is also a center of skydiving with the Gera-Leumnitz airfield . In 2006 the world championship in parachuting took place in Gera.
A developing sports facility is the Langenberg sports park in the former summer pool. The archers based there gained national fame through their club chairman and trainer Mario Oehme . Originally from the shooting discipline, Oehme was dependent on a wheelchair after an accident at work and switched to a bow and arrow. Since then he has played a decisive role in shaping the archery landscape in Germany. He crowned his sporting career with 3 participation in the summer Paralympics.
Sportsbetting Gera GmbH is also based in the city. It draws attention to itself through perimeter advertising at numerous major sporting events and is one of the largest betting providers in Germany. The license to offer sports betting , which the company received together with other providers in May 1990 under GDR law, has often given rise to controversy about its validity. In a landmark ruling by the Federal Administrative Court of June 22, 2006, the court confirmed the validity of the license for the new federal states , but declared the activities of these companies in the old federal states to be illegal because they violated the state betting monopoly there . On August 19, 2009, the company announced on its website that it would no longer accept or offer bets on the Internet.
Various art and culture festivals take place in Gera throughout the year. One of the nationally best-known events is the German Children's Media Festival Goldener Spatz , which has been held together with Erfurt since 1979 and since 2003 . Related events are the Rhineland-Palatinate / Thuringia video / film days , which take place alternately in Gera and Koblenz , and the GERAmedia trade fair with a symposium and events at the Thuringia media location.
The city awards the Aenne Biermann Prize every two years .
The international fireworks festival Flammende Sterne has been taking place every year since 2005 in Gera at the Gera-Leumnitz airfield. Since 1979 the Gera Ballet Days have taken place every year in March. The theater days in Gera are called “all theater”. As part of the Museum Night, the city's museums open their doors on one night in September. An annual zoo safari takes place in May.
From 2006 to 2009, the GERiljA Festival, a nationwide amateur band festival for young bands, took place. This festival has been replaced by the Roof Damage Festival since 2014. This takes place once a year on the roof of the brewery Sächsischer Bahnhof Gera and offers regional bands a special platform. From 2003 to 2014 the neo-Nazi festival Rock for Germany took place in Gera.
Seasonal city festivals are the Hofwiesenparkfest on the last weekend in April, the spring folk festival that takes place around the same time, the children's and family festival "Midsummer Night's Dream" (city park festival) in late May or early June, the zoo and dahlia festival in September, the cave festival and the autumn fair in October and the Geraer Fairy tale market called Christmas market . With the Lusan Festival, which takes place every two years, Gera-Lusan has its own district festival.
The Eis-Arena-Gera is a 900 m² ice rink on the central square that can be used every year from the beginning of December to mid-February.
Gera is located in the "Thuringian Black Beer Country" and has the Köstritzer Brewery in the neighboring town of Bad Köstritz, the largest and most important German black beer brewery . Typical are also the Thuringian grilled sausages (short: roster ) and the Thuringian dumplings . The Gersche Fettbemme - a slice of bread (Bemme) coated with lard - is really typical for Gera . The real Geraer ( Gersche ) are also called "Gersche Fettguschen" because of them. An allusion to earlier times, to the mostly slightly greasy rim around the mouth that arises when you bite heartily into the Bemme.
In the urban area there are two designated nature reserves (Rödel and Zeitzer Forest) and three landscape protection areas (Gera City Forest, Der Hausberg and Zaufensgraben ). The Zeitzer Forest is also a European bird sanctuary and, like the Brahmeaue, the Hainberg vineyard and the gorges near Gera and Bad Köstritz with the Roschützer Forest, are recognized FFH areas. (As of January 2017).
Economy and Infrastructure
In 2016, Gera achieved a gross domestic product (GDP) of 2.613 billion euros within the city limits . In the same year, GDP per capita was 27,391 euros (Thuringia: 27,674 euros, Germany: 38,180 euros) and thus below the regional and national average. In 2017, around 49,100 people were employed in the city.
The A 4 motorway ( Aachen - Görlitz ) with the Gera-Langenberg and Gera-Leumnitz junctions runs through the northern part of the city in a west-east direction . The Geraer Kreuz junction in between was opened to traffic on April 21, 2007 by Federal Transport Minister Wolfgang Tiefensee (SPD). Furthermore, the federal highways B 2 , B 7 and B 92 run through Gera. Before the local elections in 2004, it was decided to build an eastern bypass of the city, which branches off the B 2 in the north of the city near the Cretzschwitz district , then crosses the A 4 at the new Gera junction and finally joins the southeast bypass at the Leumnitz district. The handover of the bypass took place in 2007 together with the Geraer Kreuz. Further new roads were built in connection with the Federal Garden Show 2007 in the city center. The length of the road network in Gera is 507 km. Around 56,000 vehicles are currently registered in Gera.
In Gera there are four train stations or stops, the main train station and the train stations Gera Süd, Gera-Zwötzen and Gera-Langenberg . Only regional trains from / to Leipzig stop at the latter . At the train stations Gera Ost (formerly Zwötzen Ost) and Gera-Liebschwitz there has been no more rail operations since October 24, 2016, since the traffic on this route to Greiz and on to Weischlitz via the Gera-Zwötzen train station. The Thieschitz station was given up in 1996, Gera-Gessental followed with the timetable change in December 2010. From 1901 to 1969, the meter-gauge Gera-Meuselwitz-Wuitzer railway ran from Gera to Wuitz - Mumsdorf bei Meuselwitz , which is next to the exit station in Pforten on today's City area also had intermediate stations in Leumnitz and Trebnitz .
After Remscheid in the Bergisches Land, Gera is currently the second largest German city without an electrified rail connection. In long-distance traffic, the InterConnex from Gera via Berlin to Rostock started operations in 2002 , but stopped again on December 10, 2006. Since December 9, 2018, there has been a long-distance connection from Gera via Erfurt and Kassel to the Ruhr area and Cologne (IC 50). Regional Express lines run to Greiz , Altenburg and Göttingen , and also run at regular intervals (hourly) to the nearby ICE train stations Leipzig Hauptbahnhof and Erfurt Hauptbahnhof . The regional express line from Göttingen runs east to Glauchau . Further connections lead to Saalfeld (Saale) and Weischlitz .
The following local public transport lines in the state of Thuringia operate in Gera:
As of December 2018.
- RE 1 Göttingen - Mühlhausen (Thür) - Erfurt - Jena-Göschwitz - Gera - Ronneburg (Thür) - Glauchau on a section of the Central-Germany connection
- RE 3 Erfurt - Weimar - Jena-Göschwitz - Gera - Greiz / - Ronneburg (Thür) - Altenburg
- EBx 12 / EB 22 Leipzig - Zeitz - Gera - Weida - Pößneck ob Bf - Saalfeld (Saale)
- EBx 13 / EB 13 Gera - Weida - Zeulenroda and Bf - Mehltheuer - Hof
- EB 21 Gera - Hermsdorf-Klosterlausnitz - Jena-Göschwitz - Weimar
- RB 4 Gera - Berga (Elster) - Greiz - Plauen (Vogtl) middle - Weischlitz
In the east of the city is the Gera-Leumnitz airfield for a maximum take-off weight of 5.7 t, which is also used for sport flying. The Leipzig / Halle , Erfurt and Hof / Plauen airports are all around 90 kilometers away. The nearest airport is Leipzig-Altenburg , around 40 kilometers away, which has not been served by scheduled flights since March 2011.
Local public transport ( ÖPNV ) is served by three tram lines and 14 city bus lines operated by Verkehrs- und Betriebsgesellschaft Gera GmbH (GVB) and 2 city bus lines operated by RVG Regionalverkehr Gera / Land . The city lines only go to destinations within the city area, with the exception of line 18 (municipality of Kauern ) and line 20 (municipality of Kraftsdorf ). A trolleybus also operated from 1939 to 1977 . The buses in the city center and to Liebschwitz, the Lusan ring traffic and tram line 2 run every half hour (sometimes every 7.5 or 15 minutes due to the overlapping of the buses), in the north of the city every hour and in the other supplementary network every two hours. Tram line 1 runs every 10 minutes and line 3 runs every 7.5 minutes. The current length of the tram network is 20.1 km and that of the bus network is 235.4 km. There are 234 stops in Gera. The GVB transports around 60,500 people a day; in 2010, 18 million passengers were counted. As a special feature, the so-called "Spatzenbahn" for children and the "Partybahn" run according to a fixed timetable.
In addition to the city buses, Gera is also served by the regional bus routes of PRG Greiz , RVG Gera and some other companies. Most regional buses depart from the bus station next to the main train station, but many also serve the central transfer point for urban transport with the “Heinrichstraße” stop.
Gera has been part of the Central Thuringia transport association since December 2010 .
Traditionally, most of the industrial companies were located in the south of the city, after 1945 a new industrial area was added to the north on the motorway. The most important branches of the economy before 1990 are of little or no importance in Gera today: Machine tool construction (VEB Wema Union), textile industry (VEB Modedruck), textile machine construction (VEB Textima), electronics and device construction (VEB Elektronik Gera) no longer exist or only exist in greatly reduced form. There were also branches of VEB Carl Zeiss Jena and a brewery in Gera . The uranium ore mining of SDAG Wismut in neighboring Ronneburg was also an important economic factor. From 1990 onwards, numerous jobs were also lost in Gera. The average unemployment rate in 2011 was 12.4%. In December 2018, the unemployment rate fell to 8.4%.
The manufacturing industry in the city is shaped today by Dagro Eissmann Automotive GmbH, Iseo Deutschland GmbH, POG-Präzisionsoptik Gera GmbH, Electronicon capacitors GmbH and Othüna (margarine production), as well as the Kaeser compressor factory , SMK-Präzisionsmechanik and a branch of Max Bögl . AGA Zerspanungstechnik Gera GmbH, a company of the SAMAG Group , is also based in Gera. In 2008 D + S Europe opened a larger service center with now several hundred employees; Rittal relocated its delivery and information center from neighboring Bad Köstritz to Gera. In 2012, Lidl Stiftung & Co. KG opened a newly built central warehouse for Thuringia and Saxony in Gera. The German Post AG operates in the district Tinz one of its 82 mail centers in Germany.
Around 450,000 people live in the catchment area of the East Thuringian regional center; this gives Gera regional importance as a shopping city. Since the late 1990s, three large shopping centers have been built in the city center (1998: Gera-Arcaden , 2000: Amthor-Passage , 2003: Elster-Forum ).
The privately operated SRH Waldklinikum is a specialized care center and teaching hospital of the University of Jena . With more than 1700 employees, it is one of the largest employers in the city and is located in an exposed location in the middle of Gera's urban forest. By 2013 it was the largest clinic construction project in the new federal states since the fall of the Wall. The design as a culture hospital is another unique selling point. The Waldklinikum operates the only private university in Gera.
The city is also a member of the nationwide Healthy Cities Network .
The daily newspapers in Gera are the Ostthüringer Zeitung and the Thüringische Landeszeitung (TLZ), which produce a joint local section for the city. Both newspapers are published by the Thuringia newspaper group , which is part of the Essen WAZ media group . Other regional daily and tabloid newspapers could not hold their own in the market. Thus the third largest city in Thuringia lacks a pluralistic press landscape.
The Mitteldeutsche Rundfunk (MDR) maintains a radio studio in Gera. From 1992 to 1994, the Thuringia State Broadcasting House of MDR television was located in Hermann-Drechsler-Strasse in Gera- Untermhaus (today's Kammerspiele). The Thuringian private radio Antenne Thüringen operates the local studio for East Thuringia in Gera.
Local TV channels are Ostthüringen TV and the Open Channel Gera (OKG), which is financed by the Thuringian State Media Authority . One component of the OKG is the PiXEL television , which was the only open channel in Germany for children and young people when it was founded. In the meantime, children and young people are an integral part of almost all open channels.
In Gera, the Thuringia newspaper group publishes the weekly advertising paper Allgemeine Anzeiger as a local edition for Gera. The weekly newspaper Neues Gera has been published in Gera for around ten years as the only independent newspaper, published by the publishing house Dr. Frank GmbH. In addition to a high proportion of advertisements, it also has a large editorial section with information exclusively from Gera.
Gera is the seat of a local court and a regional court as well as a labor court and an administrative court . The first two courts mentioned are an integral part of the Gera Justice Center, which was inaugurated on April 22, 2010 and is located in the city center in the Amthorstrasse / Schloßstrasse / Rudolf-Diener-Strasse district. In addition, Gera housed one of the former seven Thuringian penal institutions until October 2017 .
One of the four offices of the German Pension Insurance Association (formerly BfA) has been located in Gera since January 1999, alongside Berlin , Stralsund and Brandenburg an der Havel, which currently has around 750 employees. A location of the Federal Office for Central Services and Unresolved Property Issues and the district administrations of the mining trade association and the trade association for trade and goods logistics are located in the immediate vicinity of the main station .
The Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Home Affairs announced in a press release on July 17, 2020 that the Federal Agency for Civic Education will have a new branch in Gera in addition to the headquarters in Bonn and the subsidiary in Berlin .
Gera has a long tradition as a garrison town . In 1905, the associations of the two Reusses together with the troops of the Principality of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt formed the 7th Thuringian Infantry Regiment No. 96. In 1961, the NVA's 3rd Pioneer Regiment was stationed in Gera . In 1991 the Pioneer Battalion 701 of the Bundeswehr was set up, which is stationed in the Gera-Hain Pioneer Barracks .
The Gera youth station is a special facility . Police , juvenile justice and public prosecutor's office work together under one roof in a separate building . The aim of this inter-agency cooperation is an appropriate response to the crimes of young people. This reaction can take place promptly, educationally and preventively in the Gera youth ward and is part of crime prevention .
There are 44 general and vocational schools in Gera .
Of the original six municipal grammar schools , only three have been in existence since the 2007/08 school year: the Goethe grammar school / Rutheneum since 1608 , the oldest Gera grammar school with its own special classes for music, the Zabel grammar school in the city center and the Karl-Theodor- Love high school in the Bieblach district . The Georg-Christoph-Lichtenberg-Gymnasium was closed in 2005, the Albert-Schweitzer-Gymnasium in 2007. The former Friedrich-Schiller-Gymnasium was merged with the Zabel-Gymnasium in 2002. A fourth high school, the Osterlandgymnasium , is also located in Gera, but belongs to the Greiz district and is therefore mainly attended by students from the surrounding area. As one of only three cities in Thuringia, Gera has an integrated comprehensive school .
Additionally exist in Gera in private ownership with particular concepts a primary school (GDP creativity elementary school Gera), a Comprehensive School ( Waldorf School Gera ), a free regular school and a special school (school for individual coping with life).
In addition to an adult education center , Gera also has a dual university ( vocational academy until 2016 ) and the state study seminar for teacher training. In spring 2007 the private SRH University of Applied Sciences for Health Gera (today: SRH University for Health Gera ) went into operation. Since the 2007/2008 winter semester, it has been possible to take courses in physiotherapy, occupational therapy, interdisciplinary early intervention and medical education. On January 26, 2017, the Thuringian state parliament officially awarded the city of Gera the title “University City”.
There are several higher vocational schools in Gera. In the Kaimberg educational center (located in the district of the same name ) social assistants, educators, curative educators and geriatric nurses are trained; In addition, training courses for curative educators are offered. The Grundig Academy for Economics and Technology is located on Friedericistraße . V. Here, among other things, training courses in the commercial area, in the IT area and in the area of automation take place.
In the Ernsee district there is a youth forest home as a forest adventure school.
Honorary citizen since 1945
- 1956: Curt Böhme , Lord Mayor
- 1966: Otto Dix , painter
- 1969: Michail Andrejewitsch Scheltowski, former commandant of the Soviet garrison Gera
- 1974: Alexei Mironovich Rybakov, 1st secretary of the CPSU of the Pskov region
- 1995: Olaf Ludwig , cyclist
- 1998: Werner Simsohn , author ( Jews in Gera , 3 volumes)
- 1999: Bernhard Sahler , dean i. R.
- 2004: Karl Weschke , painter
- 2005: Heike Drechsler , athlete
- 2016: Ulli Wegner , boxer and boxing trainer
- 2019: Roland Geipel , Pastor i. R. and civil rights activist
sons and daughters of the town
Personalities who work or have worked on site
- Johann Adam Tresenreuter (November 3, 1676 in Neustadt am Kulm - 1754); Magister and Evangelical Lutheran theologian, father of Johann Ulrich Tresenreuter , attended the high schools at Hof and Gera
- Johann Spies (around 1540–1623), printer, editor of the Historia von D. Johann Fausten (Faust-Volksbuch)
- Thomas Reinesius (1587–1667), physician and philologist; Personal doctor, professor and inspector in Gera
- Johann Wilhelm Bartsch (1750–1828), teacher at the Rutheneum , polymath and landowner
- Georg Walter Vincent von Wiese (1769–1824), Vice Chancellor and Privy Councilor of the entire Princely House of Reuss zu Gera
- Johann Ernst Daniel Bornschein (1774–1838), playwright and novelist
- Johann Karl Immanuel Buddeus (1780–1844), political scientist, city governor, police and tax director of Gera
- Moritz Rudolph Ferber (1805–1875), Gera merchant and mineralogist
- Auguste Zabel (1808–1884), founder of today's Zabel-Gymnasium in Gera
- Karl Theodor Liebe (1828–1894), geologist and ornithologist
- Rudolf Schmidt (1862–1945), architect of numerous historicist villas in Gera
- Henry van de Velde (1863–1957), Belgian architect and designer
- Alex Braune (1880–1942), operator of the Tonhalle since 1926
- Thilo Schoder (1888–1979), architect
- Ernst Moritz Engert (1892–1986), silhouette artist
- Lucie Neupert (1896–1978), alderman and parliamentary group leader in the state parliament
- Aenne Biermann (1898–1933), photographer
- Hans Otto (1900–1933), actor at the Stadttheater Gera
- Johanna König (1921–2009), actress
- Günther Grewe (* 1924) Deputy Mayor 1953/54, member of the Volkskammer (CDU)
- Horst Salomon (1929–1972), writer
- Ulli Wegner (* 1942), boxing trainer
- Theo Zwanziger (* 1945), lawyer and ex-president of the German Football Association , owns a law firm in Gera
- Konstanze Lauterbach (* 1954), director
- Michael Schindhelm (* 1960), theater director in Gera
- Leander Haußmann (* 1959), actor, stages in the city of Gera
- Bianca Schmidt (* 1990), soccer player
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- Gera and House Reuss
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