Andermatt

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Andermatt
Andermatt -
Country Switzerland Coat of Arms of Andermatt
Canton Uri
District n.a.
46°37′N 8°35′E / 46.617°N 8.583°E / 46.617; 8.583Coordinates: 46°37′N 8°35′E / 46.617°N 8.583°E / 46.617; 8.583
Population 1,320 (Dec 2012)[1]
- Density 21 /km2 (55 /sq mi)
Area 62.2 km2 (24.0 sq mi)[2]
Elevation 1,444 m (4,738 ft)
Postal code 6490
SFOS number 1202
Mayor Hansueli Kumli
Surrounded by Airolo (TI), Göschenen, Gurtnellen, Hospental, Tujetsch (GR)
Website www.gemeinde-andermatt.ch
SFSO statistics
Andermatt is located in Switzerland
Andermatt
Andermatt
For the surname, see Andermatt (surname).

Andermatt is a municipality in the canton of Uri in Switzerland.

With Realp and Hospental, it is located in the Urseren valley, 22 km (14 mi) south of Altdorf.

Geography[edit]

Parish Church St. Peter and Paul in Andermatt

Andermatt has an area, as of 2006, of 62.2 km2 (24.0 sq mi). Of this area, 40.8% is used for agricultural purposes, while 5.5% is forested. Of the rest of the land, 1.7% is settled (buildings or roads) and the remainder (52%) is non-productive (rivers, glaciers or mountains).[3] In the 1993/97 land survey, 0.4% of the total land area was heavily forested, while 5.1% is covered in small trees and shrubbery. Of the agricultural land, 4.3% is used for orchards or vine crops and 36.5% is used for alpine pastures. Of the settled areas, 0.5% is covered with buildings, and 1.1% is transportation infrastructure. Of the unproductive areas, 0.5% is unproductive standing water (ponds or lakes), 1.0% is unproductive flowing water (rivers), there is 30.9% that is too rocky for vegetation, and 19.7% is other unproductive land.[4]

Andermatt is located in a high Alpine valley—the Ursern Valley—in the Adula Alps. Since the opening of the Schöllenen route, around 1200, Andermatt has been on the Gotthard route.

Transport[edit]

Andermatt serves as a crossroads between southern Switzerland and the North as well as between eastern Switzerland i.e. Graubünden/Grisons and Western Switzerland, i.e. Valais, Bern and the Swiss Romande. The town is thus connected by four Alpine passes: the Oberalp Pass (6,706 ft; 2,044 m.) to the East, the St. Gotthard Pass (6,909 ft; 2,106 m.) to the South, the Furka Pass (7,992 ft; 2,436 m.) to the West, as well as the Göschenertal Pass (4,652 ft; 1,418 m.) to the North. The Schöllenen Gorge in the Reuss Valley between Andermatt and Göschenen is the location of the infamous Devil's Bridge.

The town is served by a Matterhorn Gotthard Bahn (MGB) owned and operated railway station. The station is connected with Brig and Visp and with the western terminus of the Rhaetian Railway at Disentis/Mustér. There is also a very short branch line, the Schöllenenbahn, between Andermatt and Göschenen, at the northern end of the standard gauge St. Gotthard Tunnel.

History[edit]

Andermatt village centre
Old Gottard post on the pass

Archaeological finds dating back to 4000 BC indicate that the Ursern Valley was populated already in the Neolithic period. During Roman times this Alpine valley was probably inhabited by some Helvetic Celtic tribes. However, the origins of Andermatt can only be traced back to Alemannic tribes, the Walsers, who established settlements in the area, where the current town of Andermatt is situated.

The Devil's Bridge by J.M.W. Turner

The parish of Andermatt was not mentioned until the year of 1203 AD, serving as a tenure to the Benedictine Disentis Abbey. This first mention refers to it as de Prato. In 1290 it was mentioned as A der Matte.[5] In 1649, with the emergence of an independent Swiss Confederation, the ecclesiastical rights of the Monastery Disentis were revoked in favour of civil legislation.

In the Flight of the Earls, Irish earls lost a fortune of gold down at the Devil's Bridge crossing ravine on St Patrick's Day in 1608. It has never been recovered and is known as the Lost Treasure of the St Gotthard Pass.[6]

Nearby Schöllenen Gorge is the site of a memorial commemorating the 1799 campaign of the Russian general Alexander Suvorov.

Between 1818-1831 the nearby St. Gotthard Pass was made accessible to stagecoaches. As the last resort before the pass, Andermatt flourished economically and became a popular spa town.

The opening, in 1881, of the St. Gotthard railway tunnel, however, reverted its fortunes as the tunnel runs immediately beneath the town, connecting the Central Swiss town Göschenen with Airolo in Ticino. Some Andermattians, who worked on the tunnel were killed during its construction. A strike by the tunnel workers, furthermore, was put down through the use of military force killing a further four workers.

Since 1885 AD Andermatt has been converted into a garrison town of the Swiss Federal Army. Here the infrastructure for the High Command of the Swiss Federal Army in an event of war was built. Today it is location of a Training Centre of the Swiss army.

Plans to build a series of reservoirs in the Ursern Valley were voted down by the locals and a huge reservoir was built instead in the next valley called the Göscheneralp.

Several avalanches, in particular in the winter of 1951 and 1975 have caused havoc in some residential areas of Andermatt killing the inhabitants of the houses affected.

By the 1930s the town's income from tourism had seriously declined, and many of the Ursental's hotels were abandoned or changed usage. The Grand Hotel Bellevue, which was built by the aristocratic Müller family from neighbouring Hospental (who at one time or another owned many other hotels nearby including the Hotel Furkablick and Hotel Furka Passhöhe - as well as hotels in Flüelen, Alpnachstad, Herisau and Neuchâtel) was converted in the 1970s into apartments, but by 1990 had been abandoned and was demolished with explosives. By the turn of the 21st century, as an alternative to the expensive skiing resorts in the Grisons (Graubünden) at St Moritz and Gstaad, Andermatt's fortunes again revived and the town has seen considerable expansion and is currently undergoing much speculative building.

Demographics[edit]

Andermatt has a population (as of 31 December 2012) of 1,320.[1] As of 2007, 10.0% of the population was made up of foreign nationals. Over the last 10 years the population has decreased at a rate of -8.8%. Most of the population (as of 2000) speaks German (95.2%), with Portuguese being second most common ( 1.0%) and Italian being third ( 0.9%).[3] As of 2007 the gender distribution of the population was 50.8% male and 49.2% female.[7]

In Andermatt about 75.2% of the population (between age 25-64) have completed either non-mandatory upper secondary education or additional higher education (either university or a Fachhochschule).[3]

Andermatt has an unemployment rate of 0.9%. As of 2005, there were 51 people employed in the primary economic sector and about 22 businesses involved in this sector. 90 people are employed in the secondary sector and there are 13 businesses in this sector. 599 people are employed in the tertiary sector, with 78 businesses in this sector.[3]

The historical population is given in the following table:[5]

year population
1799 605
1850 677
1900 818
1950 1,231
1970 1,589
2000 1,282

Climate[edit]

Between 1961 and 1990 Andermatt had an average of 147.3 days of rain per year and on average received 1,422 mm (56.0 in) of precipitation. The wettest month was April during which time Andermatt received an average of 135 mm (5.3 in) of precipitation. During this month there was precipitation for an average of 14 days. The month with the most days of precipitation was May, with an average of 14.1, but with only 128 mm (5.0 in) of precipitation. The driest month of the year was February with an average of 106 mm (4.2 in) of precipitation over 14 days.[8] According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Andermatt has a Marine West Coast climate, abbreviated "Cfb" on climate maps.[9]

Climate data for Andermatt (1981-2010)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Daily mean °C (°F) −4.7
(23.5)
−4.0
(24.8)
−0.4
(31.3)
3.2
(37.8)
7.9
(46.2)
10.9
(51.6)
13.1
(55.6)
12.8
(55)
9.5
(49.1)
6.0
(42.8)
0.0
(32)
−3.5
(25.7)
4.2
(39.6)
Average low °C (°F) −8.1
(17.4)
−7.9
(17.8)
−4.2
(24.4)
−0.5
(31.1)
3.8
(38.8)
6.5
(43.7)
8.8
(47.8)
8.5
(47.3)
5.5
(41.9)
2.3
(36.1)
−3.0
(26.6)
−6.6
(20.1)
0.4
(32.7)
Precipitation mm (inches) 121
(4.76)
115
(4.53)
122
(4.8)
125
(4.92)
146
(5.75)
132
(5.2)
126
(4.96)
132
(5.2)
148
(5.83)
124
(4.88)
144
(5.67)
116
(4.57)
1,552
(61.1)
Snowfall cm (inches) 114.8
(45.2)
113.9
(44.84)
94.7
(37.28)
71.2
(28.03)
24.6
(9.69)
2.2
(0.87)
0.1
(0.04)
0
(0)
2.1
(0.83)
22
(8.7)
85.9
(33.82)
102.5
(40.35)
634
(249.6)
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 1.0 mm) 11.9 11.0 13.4 13.1 13.7 13.4 12.6 12.4 10.6 10.5 11.8 12.2 146.6
Avg. snowy days (≥ 1.0 cm) 11.8 11.3 11.1 7.7 2.5 0.3 0 0 0.4 2.6 8.4 12.2 68.3
 % humidity 76 75 75 74 73 75 75 76 77 74 77 77 75
Source: MeteoSwiss [10]

Ski Area[edit]

Andermatt has two mountains around it which are used for ski slopes in the winter.

  • Nätschen, which is on the north-east side of Andermatt
  • Gemsstock, which is on the southern side of Andermatt

Andermatt's ski slopes are part of the Gotthard Oberalp Arena.

There is a cable car running from Andermatt to the middle of Gemsstock, and a 2-man chairlift running from Andermatt up to the middle of Nätschen. There are plans to build a new gondola going up each mountain.

Future[edit]

Orascom Hotels and Development are expanding Andermatt village into a large resort, doubling the size of Andermatt. These plans will include having:

  • 6 new 4-5 star hotels
  • Just under 500 new apartments
  • Up to 30 new villas
  • An 18 hole golf course
  • A new leisure centre
  • Over twice the amount of ski slopes currently available

These plans will create approximately 2000 jobs.

Media[edit]

In November 2012 Andermatt appeared on the British television series The Gadget Show, where presenters Jason Bradbury and Pollyanna Woodward were testing electric bicycles, scooters, and several mobile phone photo editing applications, on the hills of Nätschen.[11]

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Swiss Federal Statistics Office – STAT-TAB Ständige und Nichtständige Wohnbevölkerung nach Region, Geschlecht, Nationalität und Alter (German) accessed 29 August 2013
  2. ^ Arealstatistik Standard - Gemeindedaten nach 4 Hauptbereichen
  3. ^ a b c d Swiss Federal Statistical Office accessed 08-Sep-2009
  4. ^ Canton Uri - Ground use statistics (German) accessed 8 September 2009
  5. ^ a b Andermatt in German, French and Italian in the online Historical Dictionary of Switzerland.
  6. ^ Hume to unveil Swiss monument to Irish earls The Epoch Times, February 28-March 12, 2008
  7. ^ Uri Population statistics (German) accessed 8 September 2009
  8. ^ "Temperature and Precipitation Average Values-Table, 1961-1990" (in German, French, Italian). Federal Office of Meteorology and Climatology - MeteoSwiss. Retrieved 8 May 2009. .
  9. ^ Climate Summary for Andermatt
  10. ^ "Climate Norm Value Tables". Climate diagrams and normals from Swiss measuring stations. Federal Office of Meteorology and Climatology (MeteoSwiss). Retrieved 23 January 2013.  The weather station elevation is 1442 meters above sea level.
  11. ^ "The Gadget Show - Switzerland".  8 January 2013

External links[edit]