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( ) is the capital and largest city of Swedenmarker. It is the site of the national Swedish government, the Riksdagmarker (parliamentmarker), and the official residence of the Swedish monarch as well as the prime minister. The Monarch resides at Drottningholm Palacemarker outside of Stockholm since 1980 and uses the Royal Palace of Stockholmmarker as his workplace and official residence. As of 2009, the Stockholm metropolitan area is home to approximately 22% of Sweden's population and contributes to 28% of Sweden's gross domestic product . Stockholm is the most populous city in Sweden with a population of 825,057 in the municipality (2009), 1.25 million in the urban area (2005), and 2 million in the metropolitan area (2009).

Founded c. 1250, Stockholm has long been one of Sweden's cultural, media, political, and economic centres. Its strategic location on 14 islands on the south-central east coast of Sweden at the mouth of Lake Mälarenmarker, by the Stockholm archipelagomarker, has been historically important. Stockholm has been nominated by GaWC as a global city, with a ranking of Alpha-. In The 2008 Global Cities Index, Stockholm ranked 24th in the world, 10th in Europe, and first in Scandinavia. Stockholm is known for its beauty, its buildings and architecture, its abundant open water and many parks. It is sometimes referred to as Venice of the North. Stockholm is the second most visited city in the Nordic countries, with around one million visitors in 2006.

History

The location appears in Norse saga as Agnafit, and in Heimskringla in connection with the legendary king Agne. The earliest mention of the name Stockholm in writing dates from 1252, by which time the mines in Bergslagen made it an important site in the iron trade. The first part of the name (stock) means log in Swedish, although it may also be connected to an old German word (Stock), meaning fortification, while the second part of the name (holm) means islet, and is thought to refer to the islet Helgeandsholmenmarker in central Stockholm. The city is said to have been founded by Birger Jarl in order to protect Sweden from a sea invasion by foreign navies, and to stop the pillage of towns such as Sigtunamarker on Lake Mälaren.

Stockholm's core, the present Old Town (Gamla Stanmarker) was built on the central island next to Helgeandsholmenmarker from the mid-13th century onward. The city originally rose to prominence as a result of the Baltic trade of the Hanseatic League. Stockholm developed strong economic and cultural linkages with Lübeckmarker, Hamburgmarker, Gdańskmarker, Visbymarker, Revalmarker and Rigamarker during this time . Between 1296 and 1478 Stockholm's City Council was made up of 24 members, half of whom were selected from the town's German-speaking burghers.

The strategic and economic importance of the city made Stockholm an important factor in relations between the Danish Kings of the Kalmar Union and the national independence movement in the 15th century. The Danish King Christian II was able to enter the city in 1520. On November 8, 1520, massive executions of opposition figures, called the Stockholm Bloodbath, took place. This massacre set off further uprisings that eventually led to the break-up of the Kalmar Union. With the accession of Gustav Vasa in 1523 and the establishment of a royal power, the population of Stockholm began to grow, reaching 10,000 by 1600.

The 17th century saw Sweden grow into a major European power, reflected in the development of the city of Stockholm. From 1610 to 1680, the population multiplied sixfold. In 1634, Stockholm became the official capital of the Swedish empire. Trading rules were also created that gave Stockholm an essential monopoly over trade between foreign merchants and other Swedish and Scandinavian territories.



In 1710 the Black Death reached Stockholm. After the end of the Great Northern War the city stagnated. Population growth halted and economic growth slowed. However, Stockholm maintained its role as the political centre of Sweden and continued to develop culturally under Gustav III. The royal opera is a good architectural example of this era.

By the second half of the 19th century, Stockholm had regained its leading economic role. New industries emerged, and Stockholm transformed into an important trade and service centre, as well as a key gateway point within Sweden. The population also grew radically during this time, mainly through immigration. At the end of the century, less than 40% of the residents were Stockholm-born. Settlement began to expand outside of the city limits. In the 19th century, a number of scientific institutes opened in Stockholm, including the Karolinska Institutemarker, and the General Art and Industrial Exposition was held in 1897.

During the latter half of the 20th century, Stockholm became a modern, technologically-advanced, and ethnically diverse city. Many historical buildings were torn down, including the entire historical district of Klara, and replaced with modern architecture. Throughout the century, many industries shifted away from work-intensive activities into more high-technology and service-industry areas.

The city continued to expand and new districts were created, such as Rinkebymarker, and Tensta, some with high proportions of immigrants.

Geography



Location

Stockholm is located on Sweden's south-central east coast, where Lake Mälaren meets the Baltic Seamarker. The central parts of the city consist of fourteen islands that are continuous with Stockholm archipelagomarker. The geographical city centre is situated on the water, in the bay Riddarfjärdenmarker.

Over 30% of the city area is made up of waterways and another 30% is made up of parks and green spaces; in 2009, Stockholm was awarded title of first European Green Capital by the European Commissionmarker.

For details about the other municipalities in the metropolitan area, see the pertinent articles. North of Stockholm Municipality: Järfällamarker, Solnamarker, Täbymarker, Sollentunamarker, Lidingömarker, Upplands Väsbymarker, Österåkermarker, Sigtunamarker, Sundbybergmarker, Danderydmarker, Vallentunamarker, Ekerömarker, Upplands-Bromarker, Vaxholmmarker, and Norrtäljemarker. South of Stockholm: Huddingemarker, Nackamarker, Botkyrkamarker, Haningemarker, Tyresömarker, Värmdömarker, Södertäljemarker, Salemmarker, Nykvarnmarker and Nynäshamnmarker.

Stockholm Municipality

Boroughs of Stockholm Municipality.


Stockholm Municipality is an administrative unit defined by geographical borders. The semi-officially adopted name for the municipality is City of Stockholm (Stockholms stad in Swedish). As a municipality, the City of Stockholm is subdivided into district councils, which carry responsibility for primary schools, social, leisure and cultural services within their respective areas. The City of Stockholm is usually described in terms of its three main parts: Stockholm City Centre (Innerstaden), South Stockholm (Söderort) and West Stockholm (Västerort). The districts of these parts are:

Stockholm City Centre South Stockholm West Stockholm
The modern centrum Norrmalmmarker, (concentrated around the town square Sergels torgmarker), is the largest shopping district in Scandinavia . It is the most central part of Stockholm in business and shopping. Östermalmmarker is the most affluent district of Stockholm .

Climate

Stockholm has a humid continental climate or maritime (between Cfb and Dfb according to the Köppen climate classification). Due to the city's high northerly latitude, daylight varies widely from more than 18 hours around midsummer, to only around 6 hours in late December. Despite its location, Stockholm has relatively mild temperatures. The city enjoys 1,981 hours of sunshine annually.

Summers are warm and pleasant with average daytime high temperatures of and lows of around , but temperatures frequently exceed . Winters are cold with average temperatures ranging from , and rarely drop below . Spring and autumn are generally cool to mild.

The highest temperature ever recorded in Stockholm was ; the lowest was .

Annual precipitation is with around 170 wet days and light to moderate rainfall throughout the year. Snow mainly occurs from December through March.

Politics and government

Municipalities are responsible for government-mandated duties, and elections for the Municipal council are held every four years, parallel to the general elections.

Following the 2006 municipal elections, the seats are divided in the following way:
The governing parties Parties in opposition


The Mayor of Stockholm is as of April 2008 Sten Nordin from the Moderate Party.

Economy





The vast majority of Stockholmians work in the service industry, which accounts for roughly 85% of jobs in Stockholm. The almost total absence of heavy industry makes Stockholm one of the world's cleanest metropolises. The last decade has seen a significant number of jobs created in high technology companies. Large employers include IBM, Ericsson, and Electrolux. A major IT centre is located in Kistamarker, in northern Stockholm.

Stockholm is Sweden's financial centre. Major Swedish banks, such as Swedbank, Handelsbanken, and Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken, are headquartered in Stockholm, as are the major insurance companies Skandia and Trygg-Hansa. Stockholm is also home to Sweden's foremost stock exchange, the Stockholm Stock Exchange (Stockholmsbörsen). Additionally, about 45% of Swedish companies with more than 200 employees are headquartered in Stockholm. Famous clothes retailer H&M is also headquartered in the city. In recent years, tourism has played an important part in the city's economy. Between 1991–2004, annual overnight stays increased from 4 to 7.7 million.

The Largest companies by number of employees:


Education

Research and higher education in the sciences started in Stockholm in the 18th century, with education in medicine and various research institutions such as the Stockholm Observatorymarker. The medical education was eventually formalized in 1811 as the Karolinska Institutetmarker. The Royal Institute of Technologymarker (Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan, or KTH) was founded in 1827 and is currently Scandinavia's largest higher education institute of technology with 13,000 students. Stockholm Universitymarker, founded in 1878 with university status granted in 1960, has 52,000 students as of 2008. It also incorporates many historical institutions, such as the Observatory, the Swedish Museum of Natural Historymarker, and the botanical garden Bergianska trädgårdenmarker. The Stockholm School of Economicsmarker, founded in 1909, is one of few private institutions of higher education in Sweden.

In the fine arts, educational institutions include the Royal College of Music, which has a history going back to the conservatory founded as part of the Royal Swedish Academy of Music in 1771, the Royal University College of Fine Arts, which has a similar historical association with the Royal Swedish Academy of Arts and a foundation date of 1735, and the Swedish National Academy of Mime and Acting, which is the continuation of the school of the Royal Dramatic Theatremarker, once attended by Greta Garbo. Other schools include the design school Konstfackmarker, founded in 1844, the University College of Opera (founded in 1968, but with older roots), the University College of Dancemarker, and the Stockholms Musikpedagogiska Institut (the University College of Music Education).

The Södertörn University Collegemarker was founded in 1995 as a multidisciplinary institution for southern Metropolitan Stockholm, to balance the many institutions located in the northern part of the region.

Other institutes of higher education are:


Demographics

The Stockholm region is home to around 21% of Sweden's total population, and accounts for about 35% of the gross domestic product. The geographical notion of "Stockholm" has changed throughout the times. By the turn of the 19th century, Stockholm basically consisted of the area today known as City Centre, roughly or 1/5 of the current municipal area. In the ensuing decades several other areas were incorporated (such as Brännkyrka Municipality in 1913, at which time it had 25,000 inhabitants, and Spånga in 1949). The municipal border was established in 1971 – with the exception of Hansta, in 1982 purchased by Stockholm Municipality from Sollentuna Municipalitymarker and today a nature reserve.

Of the population of 765,044 in 2004, 370,482 were men and 394,562 women. The average age is 39.8 years; 40.5% of the population is between 20 and 44 years. 309,480 people, or 40.4% of the population, over the age 15 were unmarried. 211,115 people, or 27.5% of the population, were married. 85,373, or 11.1% of the population, had been married but divorced. 28% of residents have immigrant or minority heritage and background. Residents of Stockholm are known as Stockholmers. Some of the suburbs have large populations of immigrants. Some languages spoken in Greater Stockholm beside Swedish and English due to large numbers of immigrants are Bosnian, Syriac, Arabic, Turkish, Kurdish, Finnish, Persian, Spanish, Serbian and Croatian.

Historical population

Population in the city of Stockholm from 1570 to present
Year Population
1570 9,100
1610 8,900
1630 15,000
1650 35,000
1690 55,000
1730 57,000
1750 60,018
1770 69,000
1800 75,517
1810 65,474
1820 75,569
1830 80,621
1840 84,161
1850 93,070
1860 113,063
1870 136,016
Year Population
1880 168,775
1890 246,454
1900 300,624
1910 342,323
1920 419,429
1930 502,207
1940 590,543
1950 745,936
1960 808,294
1970 740,486
1980 647,214
1990 674,452
2000 750,348
2005 771,038
2007 795,163
2008 810,120
2009 825,057


In the last century, the population of nearby municipalities in Stockholm County has become relevant to mention as well as the population of Stockholm Municipalitymarker, as many municipalities form part of the Stockholm urban areamarker and as such are often considered part of the general term "Stockholm".

As of 2005, Stockholm urban area has a population of 1,252,020; Huddingemarker 90,182; Järfällamarker 62,342; Solnamarker 61,717; Sollentunamarker 60,528; Botkyrkamarker 77,553; Haningemarker 72,956; Tyresömarker 41,476; Sundbybergmarker 33,868; Nackamarker 82,421; Danderydmarker 30,492). In the entire Stockholm metropolitan, with its 26 municipalities, the population reaches more than 2 million inhabitants.

Culture



Apart from being a large city with an active cultural life, Stockholm, as Sweden's capital, houses many national cultural institutions. There are two UNESCOmarker World Heritage site in the Stockholm area: the Royal Palace Drottningholmmarker (within Ekerö Municipalitymarker) and the Skogskyrkogårdenmarker (The Woodland Cemetery).

Stockholm was the 1998 European City of Culture.

Literature

Authors connected to Stockholm include the poet and songwriter Carl Michael Bellman (1740–1795), novelist and dramatist August Strindberg (1849–1912), and novelist Hjalmar Söderberg (1869–1941), all of whom made Stockholm part of their works. Other authors with notable heritage in Stockholm were the Nobel Prize laureate Eyvind Johnson (1900–1976) and the popular poet and composer Evert Taube (1890–1976). The novelist Per Anders Fogelström (1917–1998) wrote a popular series of historical novels depicting life in Stockholm from the 19th to the mid-20th century.

Architecture

The city's oldest section is “Gamla Stanmarker” (Old Town), located on the original small islands of the city's earliest settlements and still featuring the medieval street layout. Some notable buildings of Gamla Stan are the large German Church (Tyska kyrkan) and several mansions and palaces: the Riddarhusetmarker (the House of Nobility), the Bonde Palacemarker, the Tessin Palacemarker and the Oxenstierna Palace. The oldest building in Stockholm is the Riddarholmskyrkanmarker from the late 13th century. After a fire in 1697 when the original medieval castle was destroyed, Stockholm Palacemarker was erected in a baroque style. Storkyrkanmarker Cathedral, the episcopal seat of the Bishop of Stockholm, stands next to the castle. It was founded in the 13th century but is clad in a baroque exterior dating to the 18th century.

As early as the 15th century, the city had expanded outside of its original borders. Some pre-industrial, small-scale buildings from this era can still be found in Södermalmmarker. During the 19th century and the age of industrialization Stockholm grew rapidly, with plans and architecture inspired by the large cities of the continent such as Berlinmarker and Viennamarker. Notable works of this time period include public buildings such as the Royal Swedish Opera and private developments such as the luxury housing developments on Strandvägenmarker.

In the 20th century, a nationalistic push spurred a new architectural style inspired by medieval and renaissance ancestry as well as influences of the Jugend/Art Nouveau style. A key landmark of Stockholm, the Stockholm City Hallmarker, was erected 1911–1923 by architect Ragnar Östberg. Other notable works of these times are the Stockholm Public Librarymarker and the Forest Cemetery, Skogskyrkogårdenmarker.

In the 1930s modernism characterized the development of the city as it grew. New residential areas sprang up such as the development on Gärdetmarker while industrial development added to the growth, such as the KF manufacturing industries on Kvarnholmen located in the Nacka Municipalitymarker. In the 1950s, suburban development entered a new phase with the introduction of the Stockholm metro. The modernist developments of Vällingbymarker and Farstamarker were internationally praised. In the 1960s this suburban development continued but with the aesthetic of the times, the industrialised and mass-produced blocks of flats received a large amount of criticism.

At the same time that this suburban development was taking place, the most central areas of the inner city were being redesigned, known as Norrmalmsregleringen. Sergels Torgmarker, with its five high-rise office towers was created in the 1960s, followed by the total clearance of large areas to make room for new development projects. The most notable buildings from this period is the ensemble of the House of Culture, City Theatre and National Bankmarker at Sergels Torg, designed by architect Peter Celsing.

In the 1980s the planning ideas of modernism were starting to be questioned, resulting in suburbs with a denser planning, such as Skarpnäckmarker. In the 1990s this idea was taken further with the development of and old industrial area close to the inner city, resulting in a sort of mix of modernistic and urban planning in the new area of Hammarby Sjöstad.

The municipality has appointed an official "board of beauty" called "Skönhetsrådet" to protect and preserve the beauty of the city.

One of the most unusual pieces of "architecture" in Stockholm is the Jumbohostel, housed in a converted Boeing 747 located at Stockholm-Arlanda Airportmarker.

Museums



Stockholm is one of the most crowded museum-cities in the world with around 100 museums, visited by millions of people every year. The most renowned national museum is the Nationalmuseummarker, with Sweden's largest collection of art: 16,000 paintings and 30,000 objects of art handicraft. The collection dates back to the days of Gustav Vasa in the 16th century, and has since been expanded with works by artists such as Rembrandt, and Antoine Watteau, as well as constituting a main part of Sweden's art heritage, manifested in the works of Alexander Roslin, Anders Zorn, Johan Tobias Sergel, Carl Larsson, Carl Fredrik Hill and Ernst Josephson.

The Museum of Modern Art, or Moderna Museetmarker, is Sweden's national museum of modern art. It has works by famous modern artists such as Picasso and Salvador Dalí.

Other notable museums:

Art galleries

Stockholm has a vibrant art scene with a number of internationally recognised art centres and commercial galleries. Amongst others privately sponsored initiatives such as Bonniers Konsthall, Magasin 3, and state supported institutions such as Tensta Konsthall and Index all show leading international and national artists. In the last few years a gallery district has emerged around Hudiksvallsgatan where leading galleries such as Andréhn-Schiptjenko, Brändström & Stene have located. Other important commercial galleries include Nordenhake, Milliken Gallery and Galleri Magnus Karlsson.

Suburbs

The Stockholm suburbs are places with diverse cultural background. Some areas in the inner suburbs, including those of Tensta, Jordbromarker, Fittjamarker, Husby, Brandbergen, Rinkebymarker, Kistamarker, Hagsätramarker, Rågsved, Huddingemarker, and the outer suburb of Södertäljemarker, have high percentages of immigrants or second generation immigrants. These mainly come from the Middle East (Assyrians, Syriacs, Turks and Kurds) and former Yugoslavia, but there are also immigrants from Africa, Southeast Asia and Latin America. Other parts of the inner suburbs, such as Hässelby, Vällingbymarker, Sollentunamarker, Täbymarker, Danderydmarker, Lidingömarker, Flysta and Hökarängenmarker, as well as some of the suburbs mentioned above, have a majority of ethnic Swedes.

Theatres

The opera house, as seen from the west
Distinguished among Stockholm's many theatres are the Royal Dramatic Theatremarker (Kungliga Dramatiska Teatern), one of Europe's most renowned theatres, and the Royal Swedish Opera, inaugurated in 1773.

Other notable theatres are the Stockholm City Theatremarker (Stockholms stadsteater), the Peoples Opera (Folkoperan), the Modern Theatre of Dance (Moderna dansteatern), the China Theatremarker, the Göta Lejonmarker Theatre, the Mosebacke Theatremarker, and the Oscar Theatremarker.

Amusement park

Gröna Lundmarker is an amusement park located on the island of Djurgårdenmarker. The Amusement park has over 30 attractions and many restaurants. It is a popular tourist attraction and visited by thousands of people every day. It is open from end of April to middle of September, and it also opens during Christmas for market. Gröna Lundmarker also serves as a concert venue.it also has a lage veriety of thing to do for people to do of all ages and it has some butifull sights from some of the rides.

Media

Stockholm is the media centre of Sweden. It has four nation-wide daily newspapers and is also the central location of the publicly-funded radio (SR) and television (SVT). In addition, all other major television channels have their base in Stockholm, such as: TV3, TV4, Kanal 5 and TV6. All major magazines are also located to Stockholm, as are the largest literature publisher, the Bonnier group.

Sports



The most popular spectator sports are football and ice hockey. The three most popular teams are AIK, Djurgårdens IF and Hammarby IF. All of these clubs have large amounts of fans and are playing at fairly large Stadiums.

AIK is currently playing at Råsunda with a capacity of 36.508, but is most likely going to move to the new Swedbank Arenamarker with a capacity of 50.00 wich will be completed in 2012 and will be the new National Stadium. However, this is not yet decided, and the fans of AIK are urging the club to buy Råsunda due to strong emotional atachment to the stadium. Swedbank Arena will be built regardless of AIK's involvement. Most of AIK's fans are from the north of Stockholm and from the northern suburbs.

Djurgårdens IF is currently playing at Stockholm Stadionmarker but will move to a New Stadium in the future. The new stadium will have a capacity of 20-25.000 and will be located close to the old one. Tvillingderbyt is the derby between AIK and Djurgården and is often referred to as one of the hottest derbies in Europe. The clubs are both founded in 1891 in Stockholm City, thereby the name (the Twinderby). Most of Djurgården's fans are from innercity of Stockholm, especially Östermalmmarker.

Hammarby's stadia is located in the south of Stockholm, along with most of its fans. They have been playing at Söderstadionmarker since the early 70's, but are to move to the new Stockholmsarenan with a capacity of 30.000, located 500 meters south of their current stadium.

Historically, the city was the host of the 1912 Summer Olympics. From those days stem the Stockholms Olympiastadionmarker which has since hosted numerous sports events, notably football and athletics. Other major sport arenas are Råsunda Stadiummarker, the national football stadium, and Stockholm Globe Arenamarker, a multi-sport arena and one of the largest spherical buildings in the world.

Beside the 1912 Summer Olympics, Stockholm hosted the 1956 Summer Olympics Equestrian Games. The city was also second runner up in the 2004 Summer Olympics bids.

Stockholm also hosted all but one of the Nordic Games, a winter multi-sport event that predated the Winter Olympics.



Cuisine

There are over 1000 restaurants in Stockholm. Due to immigration, the city has plenty of restaurants with all kinds of food from all over the world such as American fast food, Asian, Italian, Turkish, French, Greek, Scandinavian, Spanish, and Middle Eastern cuisine. Cafeterias and bars are easy to find anywhere in the city.

As of 2009 Stockholm boasts a total of nine Michelin star restaurants, two of which have two stars.

Yearly events

Stockholm Marathon, 2008


Gallery of some notable buildings

File:Stortorget Gamla Stan Buildings.JPG|Historical buildings on Stortorget in Old townmarkerFile:Royal-Palace-Stockholm_2.jpg|Stockholm Palacemarker, the official residence of the Royal Family, with its appearance consecrated between 1730–1830.File:Townhallstockholm.jpg|Stockholm City Hallmarker by architect Ragnar Östberg, view over Lake MälarenmarkerFile:Dramaten_050701.JPG|Royal Dramatic Theatremarker, One of Stockholm's many theatresFile:Grand hotel stockholm 20050902.jpg|Five star luxury Grand HôtelmarkerFile:Globen Stockholm February 2007.jpg|Ericsson GlobemarkerFile:NK Stocholm.jpg|Shopping mall of Nordiska KompanietmarkerFile:Grona lund 20050902 001.jpg|Amusement Park of Gröna Lundmarker located on the island of Djurgårdenmarker

Transport

Public transport

Greater Stockholm's commuter train


Stockholm has an extensive public transport system, one that by at least one measure is the most expensive in the world. It consists of the Stockholm Metro (Tunnelbana); two urban rail systems, Roslagsbanan and Saltsjöbanan; and a suburban rail system: the Stockholm commuter rail (pendeltåg), three light rail systems: Nockebybanan, Lidingöbanan, and Tvärbanan; a large number of bus lines, and the inner-city boat line Djurgårdsfärjan. All the land-based public transport in Stockholm County, except the airport buses/trains, are organized by Storstockholms Lokaltrafik (SL), with the operation and maintenance of the public transport services delegated to several contractors, such as Veolia Transport who operate the metro and suburban railways except for the commuter rail. The archipelago boat traffic is handled by Waxholmsbolaget.

Stockholm metro (tunnelbana)
SL has a common ticket system in the entire Stockholm County, which allows for easy travel between different modes of transport. The tickets are of two main types, single ticket and travel cards, both allowing for unlimited travel with SL in the entire Stockholm County for the duration of the ticket validity. Starting April 1, 2007, a new zone system(A,B,C) and price system applies for single tickets. Single tickets are now available in forms of cash ticket, individual unit pre-paid tickets, pre-paid ticket slips of 10, sms-ticket and machine ticket. Cash tickets bought at the point of travel are the most expensive and pre-paid tickets slips of 10 are the cheapest. A single ticket is valid for one hour. The duration of the travel card validity depends on the exact type, they are available from 24 hours up to a year. A 30-day card costs 690 SEK (73 EUR; 115 USD). Tickets of all these types are available with reduced prices for persons under 20 and over 65 years of age.

Roads

Stockholm is at the junction of the European routes E4, E18 and E20. A half-completed motorway ring road exists on the south and west sides of the City Centre.

Congestion charges

Congestion tax control point


Stockholm has a congestion pricing system, Stockholm congestion tax, in use on a permanent basis since August 1, 2007, after having had a seven month trial period in the first half of 2006. The City Centre is within the congestion tax zone. All the entrances and exits of this area have unmanned control points operating with automatic number plate recognition. All vehicles entering or exiting the congestion tax affected area, with a few exceptions, have to pay 10–20 SEK (1.09–2.18 EUR, 1.49–2.98 USD) depending on the time of day between 06:30 and 18:29. The maximum tax amount per vehicle per day is 60 SEK (6.53 EUR, 8.94 USD). Payment is done by various means within 14 days after one has passed one of the control points, one cannot pay at the control points.

After the trial period was over, consultative referendums were held in Stockholm Municipality and several other municipalities in Stockholm County. The then-reigning government (cabinet Persson) stated that they would only take into consideration the results of the referendum in Stockholm Municipality. The opposition parties (Alliance for Sweden) stated that they were to form a cabinet after the general election—which was held the same day as the congestion tax referendums—they would take into consideration the referendums held in several the other municipalities as well, but didn't specify more in detail how they would do that. The results of the referendums were that the Stockholm Municipality voted for the congestion tax, but all the other municipalities voted against it. The opposition parties won the general election and a few days before they formed government (cabinet Reinfeldt) they announced that the congestion tax would be reintroduced in Stockholm, but that the revenue would go entirely to road construction in and around Stockholm. During the trial period and according to the agenda of the previous government the revenue went entirely to public transport.

Djurgården ferry

Ferries

Stockholm has regular ferry lines to Helsinkimarker and Turkumarker in Finlandmarker (commonly called "Finlandsfärjan"); Tallinnmarker, Estoniamarker; Rigamarker, Latviamarker; and to the Ålandmarker islands. Travelers are no longer able to take a direct ferry to St. Petersburgmarker, Russia as of 1998. One must first ferry to Helsinki and then onto St. Petersburg.

The large Stockholm archipelagomarker is served by the Waxholmsbolaget archipelago boats.

Airports

Stockholm-Arlanda Airportmarker is the largest and busiest airport in Sweden with 18 million passengers in 2007.It is located about 40 km north of Stockholm.



Arlanda Express airport rail link runs between Arlanda Airport and central Stockholm. There are also bus lines, Flygbussarna, that run between central Stockholm and all the airports.

Inter-city trains

Stockholm Central Station
Stockholm Central Stationmarker has train connections to many Swedish cities as well as to Oslomarker, Norwaymarker and Copenhagenmarker, Denmarkmarker. The popular X 2000 service to Gothenburgmarker takes three hours. Most of the trains are run by SJ AB.

International rankings

Stockholm often performs well in international rankings, some of which are mentioned below:

  • In the book The Ultimate Guide to International Marathons (1997), written by Dennis Craythorn and Rich Hanna, Stockholm Marathon is ranked as the best marathon in the world.
  • In a 2002 report by the Robert Huggins Associates which compared ninety of the world's largest economic cities and regions, Stockholm was ranked twenty-second in terms of transforming knowledge into business. Stockholm was ranked first of any city outside the United States. Major cities that ranked below Stockholm included New Yorkmarker, Londonmarker, Tokyomarker, Hamburgmarker and Hong Kongmarker.
  • In the 2006 European Innovation Scoreboard, prepared by the Maastricht Economic Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT) and the Joint Research Centre's Institute for the Protection and the Security of the Citizenmarker of the European Commissionmarker, Stockholm was ranked as the most innovative city in Europe.
  • In the 2008 World Knowledge Competitiveness Index, published by the Centre for International Competitiveness, Stockholm was ranked as the sixth most competitive region in the world and the most competitive region outside the United States.
  • In the 2006 European Regional Growth Index (E-REGI), published by Jones Lang LaSalle, Stockholm was ranked fifth on the list of European cities with the strongest GDP growth forecast. Stockholm was ranked first in Scandinavia and second outside Central and Eastern Europe.
  • In the 2007 European Cities Monitor, published by Cushman & Wakefield, Stockholm was ranked as the best Nordic city to locate a business. In the same report, Stockholm was ranked first in Europe in terms of freedom from pollution.
  • In a 2007 survey performed by the environmental economist Matthew Kahn for the Reader's Digest magazine, Stockholm was ranked first on its list of the "greenest" and most "livable" cites in the world.
  • In a 2008 survey published by the Reader's Digest magazine, Stockholm was ranked fourth in the world and first in Europe on its list of the "world’s top ten honest cities".
  • In a 2008 survey published by the National Geographic Traveler magazine, Gamla stanmarker (the old town) in Stockholm was ranked sixth on its list of rated historic places.
  • In a 2008 survey published by the Foreign Policy magazine, Stockholm was ranked twenty-fourth on its list of the world's most global cities.

Modern political system

Constitutionally, the 349-member Riksdagmarker (Parliament) holds supreme authority in modern Swedenmarker. The Riksdag is responsible for choosing the prime minister, who then appoints the government (the ministers). The legislative power is then shared between the parliament and the Prime Minister led government. The executive power is exercised by the government, while the judiciary is independent. Sweden lacks compulsory judicial review, although the non-compulsory review carried out by lagrådet (Law Council) is mostly respected in technical matters but less so in controversial political matters. Acts of the parliament and government decrees can be made inapplicable at every level if they are manifestly against constitutional laws. However, due to the restrictions in this form of judicial review and a weak judiciary, this has had little practical consequence.

References and notes

  1. The World According to GaWC 2008
  2. Stockholm facts
  3. Adventures in the 'Venice of the North', CNN.com June 5, 2009
  4. Top 150 City Destinations: London Leads the Way
  5. In official contexts, the municipality of Stockholm calls itself "stad" (or City), as do a small number of other Swedish municipalities, and especially the other two Swedish metropols: Gothenburg and Malmö. However, the term city has administratively been discontinued in Sweden. See also city status in Sweden
  6. Näringslivet i siffror — Stockholm Business Region website
  7. "Besöksnäring" — Stockholm Business Region website
  8. Statistical Yearbook of Stockholm 2006, section Labour Market and Manufacturing, p. 244 pdf file
  9. Stockholm Statistical Yearbook, 2006 (Stockholms statistiska årsbok för 2006) City of Stockholm website, May 2006. The numbers provided by Stockholm Office of Research and Statistics, or Utrednings- och statistikkontoret (USK), in Swedish. ( USK official web information in English
  10. x
  11. OECD Territorial Reviews: Stockholm, May 2006
  12. Skönhetsrådet
  13. 1997 there were 1123 restaurants with permission to serve alcoholic drinks [1]
  14. Stockholm Jazz
  15. Stockholm Pride


See also



External links




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