🇩🇰 Roskilde located 30 km (19 mi) west of Copenhagen on the Danish island of Zealand, is the main city in the eponymous municipality. The city is a business and educational centre for the region and the 10th largest city in Denmark. It is governed by the administrative council of Roskilde Municipality.
Roskilde has a long history, dating from the pre-Christian Viking Age. Its UNESCO-listed Gothic cathedral, now housing 39 tombs of the Danish monarchs, was completed in 1275, becoming a focus of religious influence until the Reformation. With the development of the rail network in the 19th century, Roskilde became an important hub for traffic with Copenhagen, and by the end of the century, there were tobacco factories, iron foundries and machine shops. Among the largest private sector employers today are the IT firm BEC (Bankernes EDB Central) and seed company DLF. The Risø research facility is also becoming a major employer, extending interest in sustainable energy to the clean technology sphere. The local university, founded in 1972, the historic Cathedral School, and the Danish Meat Trade College, established in 1964, are educational institutions of note. Roskilde has a large local hospital which has been expanded and modernized since it was opened in 1855. It is now increasingly active in the research sphere. The Sankt Hans psychiatric hospital serves the Capital Region with specialised facilities for forensic psychiatry.
The cathedral and the Viking Ship Museum, which contains the well-preserved remains of five 11th century ships, attract more than 100,000 visitors annually. In addition to its internationally recognised tourist attractions and its annual rock festival, Roskilde is popular with shoppers thanks to its two centrally located pedestrian streets complete with restaurants, cafés, and a variety of shops. The city is home to the FC Roskilde football club which play in the Danish 1st Division, the Roskilde Vikings RK rugby club, and the rowing club, Roskilde Roklub. In the 1970s, the city benefited from the opening of the university and from the completion of the Holbæk Motorway connecting it to Copenhagen. Roskilde has the oldest operational railway station in Denmark, with connections across Zealand as well as with Falster, Lolland, and Jutland. The local airport opened in 1973, mainly serving light aircraft for business use and flight instruction.
Economy In 2002, services is 62%, with trade and transport at 22% and industry at 15%.
Companies One of the largest employers in Roskilde is BEC (Bankernes EDB Central) who provide IT services to the financial sector. In July 2014, Novo A/S acquired Sonion, producing micro-acoustical components for hearing aids. Top-Toy A/S with up to 200 employees is a major Scandinavian toy importer and retailer based in Tune near Roskilde Airport. DLF-Trifolium A/S, a seed producer for the farming sector, has its headquarters in Roskilde with a workforce of over 50. Rambøll, the international Danish engineering consultancy, has recently concentrated its Zealand operations in Roskilde bringing 60 new jobs to the city. Among the city's smaller companies are GPI (Glim Plastic Industri) established in 1987 producing plastic piping, Roskilde Galvanisering A/S, one of Denmark's leading galvanization companies, and Mathiesen A/S, a wholesaler of office equipment. Vestergaard Company A/S, an American firm which produces de-icing equipment and washing products for the aviation industry, has offices in Roskilde. The new city district of Musicon has already attracted 29 businesses in the area of culture and the creative arts, providing over 1,000 jobs.
Several food industries have their headquarters or production facilities in Roskilde, including: Chr. Hansen A/S, producing cultures for the dairy industry, DanÆg, eggs, the Scandinavian Pizza Company, and Stryhns, a cold cuts and meat paste producer with over 100 on the payroll.
Research parks There are a number of research institutes in the city including Risø, promoting sustainable energy, which is now part of The Technical University of Denmark. The research facilities are being extended over an additional 50 ha (120 acres) to cover the clean technology area liable to provide up to 4,000 more jobs. The CAT (Center for Avanceret Teknologi) research park is also part of the university working mainly in the areas of wind energy and biotechnology. In the public sector, the Accident Investigation Board Denmark has its headquarters in Roskilde.
Tourist Industry An important component of the city's economy is tourism which currently accounts for DKK 1.2 billion (US$200 million) per annum. Provisional figures show an increase of 16.6% in overnight stays for 2014. The cathedral and the Viking Ship Museum attract more than 100,000 visitors per year although 20 years ago there were some 200,000 visits to the cathedral.
The city is also popular with shoppers, having received Denmark's Best Shopping City Award in 2012. In addition to a wide variety of shops and restaurants along its two downtown pedestrian streets, Algade and Skomagergade, Roskilde's shopping centre RO's Torv on Københavnsvej to the east of the city houses 70 stores under one roof.
One of the oldest restaurants in Roskilde is the Raadhuskælderen, in a building dated to 1430, noted for its salmon steak with tartar sauce and grilled chicken and cream sauce dishes. Also of note is La Brasserie on Algade, the Gimle Musikcafe on Ringstedgade, which is an English-style pub-restaurant with live music, and Restaurant Toppen at the top of an 84 metres (276 ft) water tower, built in 1961, with fine views of the town. The 76-room Hotel Prindsen has foundations which date to 1695. It has been a hotel for over 100 years and is decorated in the Nordic style with wooden floors and contains the large luxury Hans Christian Andersen suite. Scandic Hotel Roskilde is a 98-room chain-run hotel established in 1989, with a restaurant serving Danish and international cuisine. The thatched-roof Svogerslev Kro is an 18-room inn dated to 1727 in the Svogerslev area, about 2.5 miles to the west of Roskilde's centre.
Roskilde has a population of over 51,793 people. Roskilde also forms one of the centres of the wider Zealand Region which has a population of over 839,619 people.
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