Rhein Energie Stadion

Rhein-Energie-Stadion, Cologne

Rhein-Energie-Stadion

One of my favourite stadiums in Germany, the RheinEnergieStadion is a proper football ground, with four good-sized, steep stands, a rectangular shape and no running track.

Müngersdorf stadium
The first stadium here bore the name of this part of Cologne: Müngersdorf. That was built in 1923 and reconstructed in 1975, becoming at that time Germany’s only completely covered stadium. The current stadium, named after its sponsor, the regional energy utility company, was completed in 2003.

1. FC Cologne
The stadium is owned by Cologne Stadia Ltd, with the principal tenant being 1. FC Cologne. Neighbouring Alemannia Aachen have also used it for UEFA Cup matches, and since 2004, American football has also been played here, with the Cologne Centurions using the ground for their games in the NFL Europe.

Capacity
Capacity for Bundesliga games is just under 51,000.

Surrounded by green
The stadium is surrounded by further sports fields and sporting facilities, including a velodrome, several football pitches, an open-air swimming pool a show jumping arena and the training grounds of Cologne Athletics Club.

Stadium tours
Guided tours around the stadium are provided on non-match days. You have to call them and arrange a time in advance. Naturally these are normally in German, but if there is a group of you and you ask if they can do it in English, you never know …! Details (in German) here or call them on +49 (0)221 71616104 (but expect them to answer in German!).

Football museum
1 FC Cologne’s football museum is located under the North Stand. Admission (2005) is 2 euros. Open Monday to Sunday 10am to 6pm (excluding matchdays) and up to around 30 minutes before kick-off on matchdays (plus for around 45 minutes after afternoon games).

Location
The stadium is several miles out of town near the ‘Cologne West’ motorway intersection (of the A1 and A4) and is best reached by car (see Cologne by road) or public transport (see City centre to stadium).

Parking
Parking facilities are being improved for the World Cup. Regularly updated details are provided on a special parking sub-section of the stadium’s website. It’s all in German but nevertheless very easy to follow. All you need to know is that “Bitte wählen Sie einen Parkbereich” means ‘Please select an area to park’, ‘Bitte wählen Sie einen Parkplatz’ means ‘Please select a car park’ and “Die Parkplatzzufahrten und Fusswege zum Stadion sind ausgechildert” means ‘Approach routes to the car parks and footpaths to the stadium are signposted’.

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