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Riehen coat of arms
State : SwitzerlandSwitzerland Switzerland
Canton : Canton of Basel-StadtCanton of Basel-Stadt Basel-City (BS)
District : No district divisionw
BFS no. : 2703i1 f3 f4
Postal code : 4125
Coordinates : 615896  /  270.48 thousand coordinates: 47 ° 35 '5 "  N , 7 ° 39' 0"  O ; CH1903:  615896  /  270.48 thousand
Height : 278  m above sea level M.
Height range : 254–486 m above sea level M.
Area : 10.87  km²
Residents: i21,339 (December 31, 2018)
Population density : 1963 inhabitants per km²
Proportion of foreigners :
(residents without
citizenship )
26.6% (March 31, 2019)
Mayor : Hansjörg Wilde ( independent )
Website: www.riehen.ch
Village center, Gartengasse

Village center, Gartengasse

Location of the municipality
Deutschland Frankreich Kanton Aargau Kanton Basel-Landschaft Basel Bettingen BS RiehenMap of Riehen
About this picture

Riehen (in Basel German Rieche [ ˈʀiəχə ]) is one of three municipalities within the canton of Basel-Stadt in Switzerland , along with the city of Basel and Bettingen . With over 20,000 inhabitants, it is the second largest municipality in north-western Switzerland .

The community is commonly counted among the wealthier suburbs of Basel. Among other things, it houses the internationally famous Fondation Beyeler , which is considered the most visited art museum in Switzerland.


Riehen is located at the lower end of the Wiesental and belongs to the agglomeration of the city of Basel .

Riehen in the border triangle

The communities directly adjacent to Riehen are:

Loerrach (D)
Weil am Rhein (D) Inzlingen (D)
Wind rose small.svg
Basel Birsfelden Bettingen
Grenzach-Wyhlen (D)

In the north, the Iron Hand forms part of the border with the neighboring German communities of Lörrach and Inzlingen.


Barricade on the border between Germany and Switzerland at the main customs office in Riehen, Division 4, 1914–1918

Neanderthals were already in this area 50,000 years ago . A permanent and continuous settlement is suspected since around 3000 BC. Around the 6th century AD, the Alemanni founded a village. The first written mention of "Wahinhofen" in 751 refers to today's Wenkenhof . The first mention of the name Riehen comes from 1113.

Historic aerial photo by Werner Friedli from 1951

In 1270 Riehen belonged to the Principality of Basel. From 1444 to 1446 Riehen was plundered and sacked as a result of the battle of St. Jakob an der Birs , and also from 1490 to 1493 during the Kappel feud . In 1522 Riehen came into the possession of the city of Basel and introduced the Reformation in 1528 . During the Thirty Years War , Riehen received a military occupation. The village was also visited by many refugees.

In 1833 the cantons of Basel were separated . Riehen remained in the canton of Basel-Stadt, together with Kleinhüningen (a district of Basel since 1908) and the adjacent, much smaller municipality of Bettingen .

During the Second World War there was a (temporary) wave of emigration to the interior of Switzerland. The Riehen memorial in the railway keeper's house commemorates the fate of refugees.

In 1958, Riehen was the first Swiss municipality to introduce women’s right to vote in the civil parish .

A geothermal reservoir at a depth of around 1,500 meters has been used since 1994 , which supplies over 8,000 residents with heat .

In total, the municipality of Riehen submitted three proposals (in each case in 1885, 1898 and 1910) for a municipality merger with the city of Basel, which were ultimately not implemented.

coat of arms

The Riehen coat of arms is a floating, triple silver stepped gable on a blue background. It goes back to the coat of arms of the von Riehen family attested to in Freiburg im Breisgau and appears for the first time in 1536 in an inventory of the village church as a community coat of arms . It was given its current form in 1948.


Population development
year 1670 1774 1815 1850 1900 1920 1941 1950 1960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2010 2020
Residents 727 1,088 1,066 1,575 2,576 4,227 7,415 12,402 18,077 21,026 20,611 19,914 20,370 20,613 21,423


Residential Council (Legislative)

The residents' council is the highest municipal authority and consists of 40 members. He is elected according to the proportional system for a term of four years. If a member leaves the council, the one with the most votes of all non-elected members on the same list moves up. The residents' council meetings take place once a month and are public.

8th 6th 6th 8th 
A total of 40 seats

The distribution of seats in the residents' council:

Political party 2010 2014 2018
SP 7th 8th 8th
SVP 8th 9 8th
EPP 6th 6th 6th
LDP 5 5 6th
FDP 6th 6th 5
CVP 3 3 3
GLP 2 1 2
Green 3 2 2

CVP and glp (parliamentary group CVP / glp) as well as EPP and Greens (parliamentary group EPP) each form a joint parliamentary group .

Municipal Council (Executive)

New Wenkenhof with park

The seven-member council (including the mayor) is elected every four years according to the majority system. If not all seats can be awarded in the first ballot, where there is an absolute majority, there is a second ballot, which is held after the relative majority. If a member leaves the local council, a substitute election takes place at the ballot box (as happened in the unexpected death of the mayor Michael Raith in the summer of 2005).

The municipal council prepares the resolutions of the residents' council and implements them after the relevant resolution. In addition, he takes care of all business that is not reserved for another municipal authority. The meetings of the municipal council take place once a week and are not public.

Members of the municipal council in the 2018–2022 legislative period:

Cagliostro pavilion at Glöcklihof
  • Hansjörg Wilde (independent), mayor, public and public services and resources
  • Guido Vogel (SP), Vice President, Health and Social Affairs
  • Daniel Albietz (CVP), Finance and Taxes
  • Daniel Hettich (LDP), Mobility and Supply
  • Christine Kaufmann (EVP), Culture, Leisure and Sport and Environment
  • Silvia Schweizer (FDP), Education and Family
  • Felix Wehrli (SVP), settlement development and green spaces

National elections

In the 2019 National Council elections, the share of the vote in Riehen was: FDP.L 27.2% ( LDP 20.3%, FDP 6.9%), SP 24.5%, SVP 19.0%, Greens 8.6%, CVP 7.1%, glp 6.0%, EVP 4.8%


Partner communities in Riehens are Mutten in the canton of Graubünden and Miercurea Ciuc in Romania .


Tram and bus

Together with the city of Basel, Riehen belongs to Zone 10 of the Northwestern Switzerland tariff association . Riehen has a dense bus network that is used by large articulated buses and small local buses. With the tram line 6 and the bus line 34 of the Basler Verkehrs-Betriebe , Riehen is connected to the city center of Basel. Riehen is also served by tram line 2 Monday to Friday (4:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.). From 8:00 p.m., taxis, which replace the small bus routes, can be called from “Riehen Dorf”. They can also be ordered for the trip from home to the “Riehen Dorf” tram station. Between 1948 and 2008, the community was also served by line 31 of the former Basel trolleybus .


Riehen is on the Wiesentalbahn , the S6 line of the Basel S-Bahn . Between 2004 and 2008, the Wiesentalbahn - Deutsche Bahn is responsible - was massively expanded. In Riehen itself, the train station was renewed and the new Niederholz stop was built in the south of the settlement area. The line is used by SBB GmbH with trains of the Stadler Flirt type ; it was extended to Basel SBB station in December 2006 . The trains run every 30 minutes on weekdays and every 60 minutes on weekends. The connection ends on the German side at Zell (Wiesental) train station .

Because of the ban on cabotage , the trains were not allowed to travel between the Riehen station on Swiss territory and Basel.

Private transport

The village center has long been heavily burdened by commuter and heavy traffic flowing through it. In addition, the Baselstrasse, which is very busy every day, is to be completely renovated from 2015 to probably 2020, so that during this time an additional, significantly increased volume of traffic can be expected on the entire Riehen-Basel axis.

Duty Free Road

The two German cities of Lörrach and Weil am Rhein, both of which border Riehen, have been striving for a direct and duty-free road connection for more than a hundred years , but this was only feasible via Swiss territory. It runs 700 meters over the district of Riehen, required a bridge over the Wiese River and touches a swimming pool. Despite considerable protests, the road was built and opened to traffic on October 4, 2013.

school and education

The school is divided into three levels in the canton of Basel-Stadt .

Primary level

A two-year kindergarten is followed by the six-year primary school, which together form the new primary level, which comprises a total of eight school years. There are a total of five primary school buildings in Riehen: the Wasserstelzenschulhaus, the Niederholzschulhaus, the Erlensträsschen schoolhouse, the Burgstrasse schoolhouse and the “Hinter Gärten” schoolhouse.

Secondary 1

The primary level is followed by a three-year secondary school I with three performance levels: general requirements (A); extended requirements (E); high requirements (P). Then the young people either switch to high school or take the vocational path. Riehen does not have its own secondary school; the young people go to school at this level in Basel.

high school

Riehen does not have a grammar school in its own municipality, but the Bäumlihof grammar school is located on Basler Grund directly on the border with the municipality of Riehen. The grammar school lasts four years and is divided into specialty classes. At the Bäumlihof grammar school, the following focuses are offered: physics and applications of mathematics, Latin, Spanish, Italian, music, artistic design, as well as biology and chemistry. It is also possible there to transfer to grammar school via the transition class from secondary school.


Beyeler Foundation

Beyeler Foundation

The Basel gallery owner couple Hildy and Ernst Beyeler founded the Fondation Beyeler and made their art collection permanently accessible to the public in 1997 in a museum designed by the architect Renzo Piano . In addition to the works of art owned by the Beyelers - mainly pictures of classical modernism and oceanic art - there are also large exhibitions on a regular basis. For example, in 1998 Christo and Jeanne-Claude packed almost 200 trees in front of the building in their typical way.

Wettsteinhaus and toy museum

Toy museum, village and vine growing museum

In the Old Wettsteinhaus, which dates back to the 17th century, is the toy museum, village and vine growing museum . It houses an extensive collection of European toys of all kinds, but mainly wooden toys , dollhouses and kitchens , tin toys , lead and tin figures , paper theaters and trains .

Art space Riehen

The art space Riehen in the former country estate “ Berowergut ” is the municipal exhibition building of the municipality of Riehen and its art commission. The presentations that have been taking place in the Kunst Raum Riehen since 1998 are dedicated to contemporary art in the region.

Churches and Deaconesses

See also the list of sacred buildings in Basel
Village church
Sarasin Park, pond and orangery

Village church

Main article Riehen village church

The Reformed Church of St. Martin is located in the historic center of Riehens and has only been slightly changed in its late Gothic style since 1694. The tower was built in 1395 and is 41 meters high.


The Reformed Kornfeldkirche was built between 1959 and 1964 according to plans by the architect Werner Max Moser from the Haefeli Moser Steiger architectural office in Zurich (one of the most important architectural offices in Switzerland at the time).

Deaconess house

The Riehener deaconess house with hospital was set up in 1852 on the initiative of Christian Friedrich Spittler based on the model of the deaconess mother house in Düsseldorf-Kaiserswerth in an original cooperage and wine merchant house that dates back to the Middle Ages and has since been rebuilt and expanded several times. The hospital has been operated by the municipality of Riehen since 1972, but since 2010 the hospital has been closed and a health center set up due to high costs. Today the deaconesses of Riehen are an evangelical community based on the rules of the Catholic Benedictine order .

St. Francis

The St. Franziskus Church is the Roman Catholic Church for the communities of Riehen and Bettingen.

Parks and forest

There are some very large, well-kept parks in Riehen. These include the Wenkenhof , which also has a riding arena, the Sarasin Park, the park of the Bäumlihof estate (also known as "Klein Riehen") and the Wettstein facility.

Riehen is surrounded on the east side by Bettinger forest and on the west side by the long alder trees. These green zones are also what enable living in the country without having to forego the advantages of the city. The Riehen natural swimming pool, which opened in 2014, is located on the edge of this green zone .



Sons and daughters

Associated with Riehen

  • Leonhard Euler (1707–1783), mathematician, grew up in Riehen.
  • Johann Lukas Legrand (1755–1836), Swiss manufacturer and politician during the time of the Helvetic Republic, was Basel's governor in Riehen from 1792 to 1798.
  • Karl August Auberlen (1824–1864), German Lutheran theologian, buried in the church in Riehen.
  • Ludwig Georg Courvoisier (1843–1918), professor of surgery, worked until 1918 in the Riehen Diakonissenspital.
  • Paul Wilhelm Schmidt (1845–1917), German theologian, died in Riehen.
  • Hans Sandreuter (1850–1901), Swiss artist, died in Riehen.
  • Alfred Jaquet (1865–1937), Swiss pharmacologist, died in Riehen.
  • Fritz Binde (1867–1921), preacher and evangelist, lived in Riehen from 1914 until his death.
  • Albert Oeri (1875–1950), Swiss journalist and politician, lived and died in Riehen.
  • Paul Mendelssohn Bartholdy (1879–1956), German chemist and industrialist, died in Riehen after emigrating.
  • Paul Basilius Barth (1881–1955), painter, lived temporarily in Riehen from 1936, died there.
  • Wilhelm Speyer (1887–1952), German writer, died in Riehen.
  • Adolf Busch (1891–1952), German-Swiss violinist and composer, lived in Riehen from 1932–1939
  • John Friedrich Vuilleumier (1893–1976), Swiss lawyer and writer, died in Riehen.
  • Valérie von Martens (1894–1986), actress and wife of Curt Goetz , died in Riehen.
  • Elisabeth Gerter (1895–1955), Swiss writer, died in Riehen.
  • Charlotte von Kirschbaum (1899–1975), German theologian, died in Riehen.
  • Hermann Kesten (1900–1996), German writer, spent the last years of his life in Riehen.
  • Walter Widmer (1903–1965), high school teacher, literary critic and translator, father of the writer Urs Widmer , died in Riehen.
  • Enrique Beck (1904–1974), German-Swiss poet and translator, spent the last years of his life in Riehen.
  • Rudolf Serkin (1903–1991), Austrian pianist, lived in Riehen from 1932–1939.
  • Grazita Hettinger (1908–2000), Swiss theater and film actress, lived in Riehen until her death.
  • Elisabeth Kraushaar-Baldauf (1915–2002), doctor and writer, died in Riehen.
  • Emil Würmli (1920–2007), Swiss composer, trumpeter and conductor, lived in Riehen for 55 years.
  • Ernst Ludwig Ehrlich (1921–2007), German-Swiss Judaist and historian, died in Riehen.
  • Ernst Beyeler (1921–2010), Swiss gallery owner and art collector, lived in Riehen, where he also died; Founded the museum of the Fondation Beyeler here in 1997
  • Jacques Wildberger (1922–2006), Swiss composer, died in Riehen.
  • Samuel R. Külling (1924–2003), Swiss theologian, founder and rector of the state-independent theological college (STH) in Riehen.
  • Iris Zschokke (* 1933), physicist, grew up in Riehen.
  • Urs Widmer (1938–2014), Swiss writer, grew up in Riehen.
  • Gabrielle Alioth (* 1955), writer, grew up in Riehen
  • Beat Jans (* 1964), politician, grew up in Riehen
  • Daniel Buess (1976–2016), drummer, grew up in Riehen
  • Roger Federer (* 1981), Swiss tennis player, grew up in Riehen, among other places.
  • Peter Epting , architect and sports official


  • Yearbook z'Rieche (since 1961)
  • L. Emil Iselin: History of the village of Riehen. Festschrift for the anniversary celebration of Riehen's 400th anniversary in Basel. Basel 1923.
  • Albin Kaspar: Houses in Riehen and their residents. Book I, Riehen 1996; Book II, Riehen 2000.
  • Albin Kaspar, Felix Ackermann, Stefan Hess , Christoph Matt: Houses in Riehen and their residents. Booklet III: Das Unterdorf, Riehen 2017 ISBN 978-3-033-06504-8
  • Jürgen Mischke, Inga Siegfried: The place names of Riehen and Bettingen. Christoph Merian Verlag, Basel 2013, ISBN 978-3-85616-614-4
  • Michael Raith : Community customer Riehen. Published by the Riehen municipal council, 2nd revised and updated edition, Riehen 1988.
  • Ursula Reinhardt: Riehen (= Swiss Art Guide , No. 250). Basel 1978.
  • Riehen, history of a village. In celebration of Riehen's 450-year membership in Basel, 1522–1972. Published by the Riehen municipal council, Riehen 1972.
  • Lukrezia Seiler , Jean-Claude Wacker: Refugees came almost every day. Riehen and Bettingen - two border villages 1933 to 1948 (= contributions to Basel history ). Christoph Merian, Basel 2013, ISBN 978-3-85616-580-2 .
  • Arlette Schnyder and a .: Riehen - a portrait. Schwabe, Basel 2010, ISBN 978-3-7965-2672-5 .
  • Peter Thommen: The fortified church of Riehen. Material booklets for archeology in Basel, volume 5, Basel 1993.
  • Anne Nagel, Klaus Spechtenhauser: Riehen. (Swiss Art Guide, No. 942/943, series 95). Edited by the Society for Swiss Art History GSK. Bern 2014, ISBN 978-3-03797-126-0 .

Web links

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

Individual evidence

  1. Permanent and non-permanent resident population by year, canton, district, municipality, population type and gender (permanent resident population). In: bfs. admin.ch . Federal Statistical Office (FSO), August 31, 2019, accessed on December 22, 2019 .
  2. Resident population at the end of the month by home, municipality and neighborhood. (XLSX; 38 kB) Statistical Office Basel-Stadt, April 23, 2019, accessed on May 2, 2019 .
  3. Riehen is increasingly becoming a posh suburb . In: baz.ch/ . ( bazonline.ch [accessed on August 5, 2018]).
  4. ↑ Life is best in Riehen . In: SWI swissinfo.ch . ( swissinfo.ch [accessed on August 5, 2018]).
  5. Switzerland - Most visited museums by number of admissions in 2016 | Statistics. Retrieved August 5, 2018 .
  6. ^ L. Emil Iselin: History of the village of Riehen. Basel 1922.
  7. Riehen Memorial. Retrieved December 4, 2013 .
  8. Geothermal project in Riehen (BS) receives exploration contribution. In: bfe.admin.ch . January 10, 2020, accessed January 13, 2020 .
  9. Together, going it alone: ​​the relationship between the city and its suburbs. February 11, 2018, accessed on July 8, 2020 (Swiss Standard German).
  10. Jürgen Mischke : The Riehen coat of arms questioned . In: Jahrbuch z'Rieche 2014, pp. 118–125.
  11. Population in February 2020. Retrieved July 8, 2020 .
  12. Allocation of seats. (PDF) Riehen municipality, February 4, 2018, accessed on February 4, 2018 .
  13. National Council elections 2015: strength of the parties and voter turnout by municipality. In: Results of the National Council elections 2015. Federal Statistical Office, 2016, accessed on January 16, 2017 .
  14. gbbasel.ch: Welcome! - Edub's website , accessed January 31, 2011.