The Aachen region has its roots in a great European past; Aachen is the city of Charlemagne, the first capital of an empire with European dimensions. Today, excavations from Roman times, historic castles and a bathing tradition stretching back to the Middle Ages still bear witness to this history.
More recent times in the district of Aachen were marked by the mining industry and the production of textiles. Today it is, above all, high-tech enterprises active in the fields of automobile and rail technology, information and communication technology and life sciences that have enabled Aachen to fulfil its central European role.
Avantis: cross-frontier industrial zone
Avantis, situated between Aachen and the Dutch city of Heerlen has brought into being a model cross-frontier industrial zone (100 ha), the first of its kind in Europe. The service-centre EBC-Eurode Business Centre, which lies directly on the German-Dutch frontier between the towns of Herzogenrath and Kerkrade, successfully rounds off the European economic activities of the Aachen region. .
Ideal road communications in the heart of Europe
The region of Aachen contains several motorway intersections. Brussels, Eindhoven and Cologne can be reached in an hour, Antwerp or cities in the Ruhr district in two hours, and in three hours you are in Amsterdam, on the Channel coast, in the north of France or Frankfurt. A day's journey away from Aachen and you have reached 165 million consumers.
High speed trains
By the introduction of high speed trains, rail connections have been raised to the highest standard. The Thalys, for example, connects Aachen with Brussels and Paris. Frankfurt can be reached with the ICE in about two hours. There are international airports in Maastricht Maastricht Aachen Airport, Düsseldorf, Liège, Cologne-Bonn and Brussels.
Industrial zones and technology centres
The city of Aachen has severally fully functioning industrial areas at its disposal.
In addition to these a 'Campus Life Science' is being planned for the life sciences. This is intended to be predominantly reserved for activities within the sphere of medicine and biotechnology.
People with innovative ideas starting out in business are being offered space in the Technology Centre at the Europa Platz in Aachen (TZA) and in the Medical-Technical Centre (MTZ) for as long as they are still in the starting-up phase.
A varied choice of industrial zones throughout the Aachen region offers enterprises sufficient areas for the establishment and expansion of their activities. With a total of seven technology and service centres in Alsdorf, Baesweiler, Eschweiler, Herzogenrath, Monschau and Stolberg, the district of Aachen has a variety of sites on offer that should satisfy the most diverse needs. These sites over a total area of up to 54,000 square meters are available to High-Tech concerns as well as service and trade enterprises.
Research and Technology Potential
It would be difficult to find such a concentration and variety of technical and scientific potential in any other region of Europe. "Our future is shaped by what we know!" This is successfully demonstrated in the Aachen region.
Research and instruction at the highest level are provided by five centres of higher education, including the world famous RWTH. In addition Aachen has three Fraunhofer Institutes, the largest university clinic in Europe and top international research as practised in the Aachen Ford Research-Centre.
All this potential for research and development has produced a platform for the exchange of know-how in the Aachen region. Top products manufactured by traditional and High-Tech firms bear witness to this.
Culture and Recreation
The historic yet landscaped surroundings provide numerous leisure activities whether you are interested in culture or recreation. Every season both Aachen's Municipal Theatre and the Grenzland Theatre perform new, interesting and high quality productions. In the great museums and numerous galleries many internationally famous artists provide artistic enjoyment. Highlights like the International Show Jumping Championships CHIO Aachen, the Carnival event 'Wider den tierischen Ernst', the Rur lake in flames (Rursee in Flammen), cultural summer events in the city and district of Aachen and the delightful Christmas markets also regularly attract huge numbers of visitors from outside Aachen. The Eifel and the Hohes Venn provide walkers and those seeking recreation with undiluted nature. A varied programme of leisure time activities including water sports, riding, golf, winter sports, gliding or relaxing in the thermal baths and saunas are part and parcel of the Aachen regional experience.