Ten things that Frankfurters are quite uncomfortable with

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Von: Luis Teschner

Frankfurt is the best city in the world. Admittedly, this also includes one or the other flaw that the people of Frankfurt do not like to talk about. A collection.

Frankfurt – There is hardly a topic where opinions are popular Frankfurt as far apart as the city itself. Some love them, are full of local patriotism and defend them with heart and soul from all other cities in Germany, Europe and the world. The others are more critical, complain about problems and deficiencies, maybe even live in Frankfurt out of necessity.

The situation is similar when you look at the various rankings that appear annually. Sometimes Frankfurt plays at the top – as ninth coolest city in the world or with the second best main station in Europe. Frankfurt performs poorly just as often – as one of the unfriendliest cities in Germany or as second worst city for immigrants.

The truth probably (as is often the case) lies somewhere in between. And no matter how great or terrible you find the city, the vast majority of Frankfurters agree on a few aspects. For example, which ones they are more embarrassed about. That’s why we’ve collected and put our finger on the wound with the following list: 10 things that Frankfurters are really uncomfortable with.

1. Frankfurt as the leader in nationwide crime statistics

For years, Frankfurt was number one in Germany’s crime statistics as the “crime capital”. In the meantime, the city on the Main is “only” one of the top 3, because according to the data, it has become saferbut still occupies one of the top places.

We present: 10 things that Frankfurters are quite uncomfortable with. © Florian Gaul/dpa

However, many a resident is also proud of the “hard pavement” on which he moves every day. No matter how you deal with it – in the end it is a bit sad how badly the people of Frankfurt can keep to the law.

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2. The bad conditions in the Frankfurt train station district

This point goes in a similar direction: After all, a not inconsiderable part of the crime takes place here, in the Frankfurt train station district. The streets around the main train station are almost legendary as a red light district and center of drug consumption. Anyone who walks down Niddastrasse or Taunusstrasse can experience what it’s like here at any time of the day.

Bahnhofsviertel Frankfurt: After a robbery, it is also the turn of the injured party.
There is always something going on in the station district. Unfortunately, there are also quite a few ugly things. (Archive image) © Boris Roessler/dpa

Sure, there are just as many nightlife options for the average Frankfurter on Kaiserstraße – and many love the station district for its uniqueness. The conditions that are a bit shameful despite efforts hard to get a grip on, but yes.

3. The ex-mayor and his countless missteps

Everything has really been said about the former Lord Mayor of Frankfurt, Peter Feldmann. And a lot of it is really embarrassing. Therefore, he has earned his place in this list. But probably nobody really wants to hear the whole story again at this point, so it stays with this mention (but by now everyone knows it by heart anyway).

4. The chemical composition of the Main

While Peter Feldmann is part of Frankfurt’s recent history, the Main is Frankfurt’s eternal companion and, after all, the reason why the city exists at all. However, one should talk about the water quality of the Main – it is really bad. According to the information portal water quality swimming in the Main is “strongly discouraged” and due to a lack of fish, “commercial fishing has almost died out”.

Shipping on the Main is still secured.  But the time of low water is yet to come.
The Main is many things – but definitely not clean. © Boris Roessler/dpa

In the 1970s, the Main was even considered one of the “most heavily polluted rivers in Europe”. Anyone who looks at the brown soup under the Iron Bridge will believe it immediately. Of course, Frankfurt is not solely to blame for this – the whole thing is still quite unpleasant.

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5. What can be found on the bottom of the Main

Speaking of Main: Not only is its cleanliness questionable, but so is its content. It is true that it is so brown because of federal sandstone particles and opaque that one cannot see what is at its bottom. 2021 dozens of e-scooters ended up in the Main. No one knows exactly what else has accumulated there over the decades – maybe you don’t want to know at all. Pretty uncomfortable.

Stand-up paddling can be done on the river, in the sea or on standing water.  dpa
You can stand up paddling on the Main – but should you really do it given the lack of cleanliness? © dpa

6. The people who still spend their free time on the Main

Actually, the lack of cleanliness and the questionable content should be enough to make nobody want to swim in it anymore. But no, in summer you can watch volunteers stand up paddling on the Main every day. This also includes: Falling into the Main when a larger ship produces a wave that is difficult to assess. Hats off to anyone who dares (or better: does) that. Many real Frankfurters get a little sick just looking at it.

7. The cost of living – live, eat and live in Frankfurt

Many people also get sick when they see their account balance. If you want to live in Frankfurt, you have to be prepared for high rents, expensive restaurants and hefty public transport prices. Sure, that looks even worse in other big cities, but unfortunately you can’t buy anything from this knowledge.

A doner kebab for 10 euros there is also only in Frankfurt. Also the downtown area Westend is known for its expensive apartments and nightlife. Only the slightly cheaper suburbs remain for low earners – or a fairly frugal life.

8. The many suits in Frankfurt’s banking district and beyond

Least disturbed by the high costs are probably the many bankers and consultants who earn a golden nose in one of the many financial professions in Frankfurt. As the financial center of Germany, there is a lot of money in Frankfurt – and a lot of people in suits who earn and spend this money.

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The European Central Bank in Frankfurt am Main.
The European Central Bank in Frankfurt am Main: just one of the many financial centers in the city. © IMAGO/Dirk Sattler

For mere mortals who only watch the suit wealth from a distance, this can seem a bit decadent. Why this outdated dress code anyway? Honestly, yuppies should finally get rid of the tie and jacket uniform.

9. The Zeil, Frankfurt’s biggest (and ugliest) shopping street

It looks completely different in the city center, on Frankfurt’s shopping mile Zeil. Between the Haupt- and Konstablerwache there is pretty much every major chain of stores that has any reputation in Germany. But just between us – it’s not really nice there. Completely overrun, especially at the weekend, and also just a bit ugly, many see the Zeil more as an eyesore than as its flagship. It’s actually a pity that the Zeil is often the first port of call for many visitors and then leaves a rather bad impression.

10. Offenbach, the unloved little sister of Frankfurt

Dear neighbors from Offenbach, you have to be very strong now. For many Frankfurters there is nothing worse than visiting the neighboring city to the east. Offenbach has always been and always will be the victim of numerous nasty sayings and jokes. Actually nonsensical: People complain about the rents in Frankfurt, but hardly anyone wants to move voluntarily to the cheaper Offenbach. True to the motto: “The sun shines over Frankfurt, the whole world over Offenbach.” Therefore, such a list would simply not be complete without mentioning Offenbach.

Here they are, the ten things that make us Frankfurters really uncomfortable. Do you agree? Do you know any other aspects that are embarrassing for the average Frankfurter? Alternatively, here would be a list with Eight things that only real Frankfurters can do. (lute)

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