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Vienna consists of 23 administrative units. A unit is called Bezirk (plural Bezirke), or district in English. The legal standing of Viennese districts is less powerful than in case of districts in the other Austrian states, but the political representatives of each Viennese district have some decision making power in local issues such as traffic or area planning.
The geographic layout of the districts on the map of Vienna is quite intuitive. District number 1, Innere Stadt (Inner City), is located in the heart of Vienna inside the former city walls. Today Innere Stadt is separated from the neighbouring districts by the Ringstrasse (Ring Street), which was built after city walls were torn down in 1857. The majority of the biggest tourist attractions and landmarks can be found in the first district, including the Hofburg, Stephansdom, the Staatsoper, the Rathaus, the Parliament, and many others.
Adjacent to the first district are districts 2 through 9 with the numbers going clockwise starting from district 2 (Leopoldstadt) located in the area around Prater. The Ringstrasse separates these districts from Innere Stadt. There is another (outer) ring road called the Gürtel (belt), which forms the border between these districts and other districts located further away from the city centre. Like the Ringstrasse, the Gürtel was built on the site of a former wall, which in this case was called Linienwall and was also torn down in the 19th century in order to simplify the accelerating expansion of Vienna.
While the districts located inside the Gürtel-bordered area in the centre host mostly historic buildings and serve as the centre of business, politics, culture, and tourism, the other districts have usually mostly residential or industrial functions. Most industrial activities take place in the southern and eastern parts of Vienna. In the north-east, in the area separated from the rest of the city by the river Danube, there are relatively newer districts 21 and 22. District 22 hosts the Vienna International Centre (the United Nations offices, also referred to as UNO City).
The district number is usually reflected in the postal code for any place in Vienna (with the exception of Schwechat Airport or UNO City). Postal codes in Austria have four digits. In Vienna, the first digit is always 1, the following two digits are the district number, and the last digit is generally zero. Here you can see the full list of Vienna postal codes.
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