Twin city since 1967
Photo: city of Arras
Arras is located in northern France and the seat of government of the Département of Pas-de-Calais. The town’s landmarks include two large squares in the town centre, the Grande Place and the Place des Héros. The old town with its Late Gothic belfry is an attraction for many tourists. The citadel was established by Vauban. Both the citadel and the belfry have been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 2008.
Around 16,000 students are enrolled at Artois University, which has 10 campuses. The largest employers include SARL ENERSYS, a manufacturer of accumulators for industry, and the hospital. Eurotunnel, which connects the European mainland to the British Isles, is of vital economic importance to the city and the Département.
Until the 1990s, the partnership was largely maintained by youth and student exchanges. With the political changes in Germany in 1990, the relationship with Arras stagnated and contact almost ceased as the French side failed to respond to all initiatives on the part of Chemnitz.