Friedrichsplatz (Mannheim) - Friedrichsplatz (Mannheim)

Friedrichsplatz with water tower, water features and rose garden
Water features and arcade edge development

The Friedrichsplatz in Mannheim is one of the most completely preserved neo-baroque and Art Nouveau structures in Germany . It was created in the years after the Mannheim water tower was completed in 1889.


As early as the 1870s, a decision was made in Mannheim to expand the city to the east adjacent to the city center. In this context it became necessary to build a water tower for the water supply . In 1885 the location of the Mannheim water tower was selected. The adjacent area was to be developed into one of the “most beautiful places in the world”.

The water tower was already listed as Mannheim's landmark shortly after it was built in 1889 . In 1901 the Parkhotel, today the “ Maritim Hotel Mannheim”, was completed south of the water tower. It was only with the establishment of the Rosengarten festival hall (built 1899–1903) and the art gallery (1907) that there was agreement on the final design of the square. On the occasion of the city anniversary in 1907 (300 years of the city of Mannheim), the square was roughly given its current appearance.

When Mannheim was bombed during World War II , the water tower was hit and the area around Friedrichsplatz, including the buildings, was badly damaged. In 1963 the water tower was restored, and in 1964 the reconstruction of Friedrichsplatz was completed with the restoration of the corner houses at the confluence with the Augustaanlage .

Location and urban significance


The water tower and Friedrichsplatz were built directly outside the inner city ring as an extension of the planks . As the most important shopping street, these run between the P and O squares in a west-east direction. At the same time, the square is the end of the Augustaanlage avenue leading from Heidelberg from the east. It forms a kind of “gateway to the city center”: all road users who come from the direction of Oststadt on the A 656 and enter the squares or turn into the inner city ring, first pass the square with the water tower. It looks like a “visiting card” for the city.

The square continues the width of the N and O squares to the east over the Kaiserring as air space, which is optically dominated by the water tower and the changing fountains. At the eastern end there is a homogeneous setting of the square thanks to the uniformly high facade of the arcade edging, which surrounds the square in a semicircle and has many patina-green balcony railings.

The water tower is also centrally located in the north-south axis Tattersall - and Berliner Straße parallel to the Kaiserring.

The center of the large water basin with fountain lies geometrically at the intersection of imaginary extensions of the streets in the eastern area leading to Friedrichsplatz.


The square was named after Friedrich I. He was Grand Duke of Baden from 1856–1907. Friedrich represented a liberal policy and carried out important and trend-setting reforms. As the son-in-law of the future Emperor Wilhelm I , he advocated the unification of the German states under Prussian leadership.



The plant was landscaped in symmetry based on the French model.

A pergola runs on both sides of the water staircase, concealing the difference in terrain and inviting you to relax. Inward there is a wide path around the pool and the tower. The figures that are set up at the pool come from Franz Metzner . The lawn and the fountain are at the original site level, while the streets around the outside are raised.

The Rosengarten festival hall and the art hall were built in the north-south axis of the water tower . The art gallery - designed by Hermann Billing in 1907 - corresponds with its red sandstone to the rose garden opposite the line of sight - opened as a festival hall by Bruno Schmitz in 1903 - or the perimeter development.

Every year since 1978 the Mannheim Christmas market takes place on Friedrichsplatz around the water tower. In addition, this place is used for events with a stage for smaller rock and pop performances.

In 2006 the cafes, boutiques, wine shops and other shops around Friedrichsplatz under the arcades merged to form the “Friedrichsplatz eV” association in order to make the attractive location better known nationwide.

Water stairs and water features

The water games at Friedrichsplatz at night

On the side of the water tower facing out of town there is a water staircase that leads into a large basin with an adjoining fountain . The water feature , which is operated from the beginning of April to mid-October, is illuminated when it gets dark, with a colorful play of colors on weekends and holidays. The large fountain was first put into operation on September 9, 1893. [1] The technology of the fountain system lastly comprised 98 headlights, 16 color changers, 178 nozzles and 20 controlled pumps with incandescent lamp technology. [2] In June 2020 a new one was LED-supported lighting with 84 spotlights put into operation, which cover a larger color spectrum and also save around 90 percent of the previous power consumption. [3]


Commons : Friedrichsplatz (Mannheim) - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. MARCHIVUM : Chronicle star . September 9, 1893, Retrieved September 28, 2018 .
  2. Official Journal 40 of October 2, 2014 (PDF 3.5 MB) City of Mannheim, October 2, 2014, p. 5 , accessed on December 22, 2014 .
  3. MVV Energie : MVV and the city of Mannheim open fountain season on Friedrichsplatz with new, energy-saving LED lighting. June 9, 2020, accessed June 20, 2020 .

Coordinates: 49 ° 29 ′ 2 " N , 8 ° 28 ′ 33.7" E