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April 1945 American troops occupy the destroyed and depopulated city, which is still home to 217,000 people (1939: 470,000). Around six million cubic meters of rubble lie on the city's streets, squares and properties (one million of which were cleared in 1949).

1945 Construction of a memorial and laying out a cemetery for the victims of the Seelhorst mass shooting on the north bank of Lake Maschsee. Refoundation of the SPD by Kurt Schumacher. Gustav Bratke (SPD) becomes mayor.

1946 Devastating flooding of the Leine in February. Hanover becomes the capital of the newly formed state of Lower Saxony.

1947 First export fair. Especially after the currency reform of 1948, it contributes to the rapid reconstruction of the city.

1948 Labor hunger strikes. Otto Brenner becomes district manager of IG Metall. The painter and graphic artist Kurt Schwitters, born in Hanover in 1887, died in exile in England. tombstone in Engesohde Cemetery after reburial; Inscription: 'You never know'.

1949 Laying of the foundation stone for the "Miracle of Hanover" by the reconstruction planning led by Rudolf Hillebrecht. Preserved older substance of the modern city center is brought together in a "traditional island" between the market church and the banks of the Leine.

1950 Expansion of the car-friendly city. The first of the new expressways around the city center - the Messeschnellweg - has been completed. The opera house, destroyed in 1943, is reopened.

1951 At the international construction exhibition "Constructa", the city presents itself with the housing projects "Kreuzkirchenviertel" in the center and "Constructawohnblock" in Hildesheimer Straße.

1952 Hannover-Langenhagen Airport is opened for civil air traffic.

1953 In the restored old town hall, the city archive, 1889 to 1940 in the Kestner Museum, moves into the so-called Doge's Wing.

1954 The city has more than 500,000 inhabitants for the first time. The Lower Saxony Stadium, heaped up from the rubble of the Second World War, is inaugurated. On May 23, Hannover 96 became German soccer champions after a 5-1 win over the highly favored team 1. FC Kaiserslautern, which includes five players who would become world champions a few weeks later in Bern. Establishment of a first pedestrian zone in Grupenstrasse.

1955 Over a quarter of the population are refugees and displaced persons. Over 50,000 Hanoverians are active in gymnastics and sports clubs.

1959 There is full employment in the labor market. 5,784 guest workers from southern Europe who are recruited by industry live in Hanover (1992: 66,655). Installation of the sculpture "Humility" by Kurt Lehmann in the Aegidienkirche memorial ruins.

1960 City manager Karl Wiechert reports that 100,000 apartments have been built since the end of the war. The 100th children's playground is completed at Klingerplatz.

1961 The reconstruction of the city is considered to be largely complete. Establishment of the Volkswagenwerk Foundation from the proceeds of Volkswagen shares with the task of promoting science and technology in research and teaching.

1962 The Lower Saxony state parliament passes the "Law for the regulation of the Greater Hanover area". The "greater area" carries out tasks of supra-local importance for the municipalities, in particular the establishment of a regional spatial planning promme.

1963 Inauguration of the new synagogue on Haeckelstrasse. Misburg, the largest village in the county, receives city rights.

1965 Start of subway construction. At the same time, the city center is being redesigned. Beginning of teaching at the Medical University founded in 1961.

1966 Opening of the Historical Museum on the High Shore. The cramped "Heimatmuseum" (until 1965) moves into the new building designed by Dieter Oesterlen.

1969 Red dot campaign: Successful demonstrations against fare increases in local public transport supported by students, trade unionists and local politicians.

1970 The transport companies in the greater Hanover area (Üstra, Bundesbahn, Bundespost and some private liner services) form a uniform transport association.

1974 As part of the administrative and regional reform in Lower Saxony, the city of Misburg, the communities of Anderten, Bemerode, Wülferode, Wettbergen, Ahlem and Vinnhorst and parts of other communities are incorporated into Hanover. 15 towns and five municipalities will be formed in the district, which has also been redesigned and encircles the city.

1975 The first light rail line on the Oberricklungen - Hauptbahnhof subway line goes into operation. Other lines follow from 1979 to today, February 2000, with the Kronsberg Expo station.

1976 The new café at the Kröpcke begins operations.

1979 Opening of the Sprengel Museum in Hanover at the Maschsee.

1980 The Zweckverband Großraum Hannover replaces the Großraumverband.

1981 The redesigned Georgstraße invites you to "Schorsen stroll" again for the first time. Hanover is divided into 13 districts.

1983 The new Leibnizhaus on Holzmarkt with the reconstructed facade of Leibniz’s residence and death house in Schmiedestraße (destroyed in 1943) is inaugurated as a meeting place for science and research.

1985 Reopening of the opera house after fifteen months of conversion and renovation. The interior is completely redesigned according to the design by architect Dieter Oesterlen.

1986 Separation of CeBit, the world's largest trade fair for information and communication technology, from the industrial fair.

1987 Conclusion of a town twinning with the trade fair city of Leipzig (GDR).

1989 border opening. On the second weekend after the fall of the Wall, 50,000 GDR citizens visit the city.

1990 In Paris, Hanover was awarded the contract to organize Expo 2000 under the theme "Human-Nature-Technology".

1992 Opening of the new theater in Prinzenstrasse. On May 23, Hannover 96 becomes the first second division club in the history of German football to win the DFB Cup final in Berlin. The team prevails on penalties against first division side Borussia Mönchengladbach.

1994 Inauguration of the memorial on Opernplatz to commemorate all murdered and deported Jews from Hanover (design: Michelangelo Pistoletto).

1996 First municipal elections under the new constitutional law: Herbert Schmalstieg (mayor since 1972 and as such chairman of the council) is elected mayor under the new law; he is now also head of the city administration.

1997 Start of the renovation and modernization of the old town hall into a shopping and event center (architect Dieter Neikes); Inauguration is in 1999. Groundbreaking for the new district of Kronsberg.

1998 Numerous construction measures in the entire city area are started or continued with the completion date "until the Expo". In road construction and rail transport (S-Bahn expansion) as well as with the widening of the Mittelland Canal and the expansion of the airport.

1999 The new Nord/LB building on Aegidientorplatz / Friedrichswall is the largest project under construction in the city center (it will tower over the new town hall). Despite the large construction sites in Berlin, the Kronsberg Expo site is the largest overall construction site in Germany. The ongoing construction measures to redesign the main station with Ernst-August-Platz and Raschplatz will change the city center permanently.

2000 For the first time a world exhibition takes place in Germany. The EXPO runs from June 1st to October 31st in Hanover.

2001 Founding of the Hanover Region: Tasks that were previously performed separately by the then district and the state capital have been in one hand ever since.

For further reading:

Hanover chronicle from the beginnings to the present: Numbers, data, facts. Editors Klaus Mlynek and Waldemar R. Röhrbein. Hanover 1991.

History of the City of Hanover (2 vols.). Eds. Klaus Mlynek / Waldemar R. Röhrbein. Hanover 1992 / 1994