Nisha Rathode

Liepaja

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Country  Latvia
Area  60.4 km2
Mayor  Uldis Sesks
Population  82,386
Colleges and Universities  University of Liepaja, Liepaya Marine College, University of Liepaja

Liepaja , is a city in western Latvia, located on the Baltic Sea directly at 21°E. It is the largest city in the Kurzeme Region and the third largest city in the country after Riga and Daugavpils. An important ice-free port, as of 1 July 2011, Liepaja had a population of 75,000.

Contents

Map of Liepaja

Liepaja is known throughout Latvia as "The city where the wind is born", likely because of the constant sea breeze. A song of the same name (Latvian: ) was composed by Imants Kalni?š and has become the anthem of the city. Its reputation of Liepaja as the windiest city in Latvia was strengthened with the construction nearby of the largest wind power plant in the nation (33 Enercon wind turbines).

Liepaja city of wind music and diversity latvia


The Coat of Arms of Liepaja was adopted four days after the jurisdiction gained city rights on 18 March 1625. These are described as: "on a silver background, the lion of Courland with a divided tail, who leans upon a linden (Latvian: ) tree with its forelegs." The flag of Liep?ja has the coat of arms in the center, with red in the top half and green in the bottom.

Karosta former secret military town in liepaja city latvia


History

The original settlement at the location of modern Liep?ja was founded by Curonian fishermen of Piemare, and was known by the name L?va (from the name of the river L?va on which Liep?ja was located. This term was derived from the Livonian word Liiv meaning "sand"). The oldest written text mentioning the name is dated 4 April 1253. The Livonian Order, under the aegis of the Teutonic Order, established the settlement as the village of Liba(u) in 1263. In 1418 the city was sacked and burned by the Lithuanians.

Geography

Liepaja is situated on the coast of the Baltic Sea in the south-western part of Latvia. The westernmost geographical point of Latvia is located approximately 15 km (9 mi) to the south thus making Liepaja Latvias furthest west city. Liepaja is situated between the Baltic Sea and Liepaja Lake with residential and industrial areas spreading north of the lake. The Trade Channel () connects the lake to the sea dividing the city into southern and northern parts, which are often referred to as the Old Town () and the New Town () respectively. The city center is located in the southern part and, although called the Old Town, is relatively more developed. Most of the administrative and cultural buildings are found here as well as the main leisure areas. Along the coast the city extends northwards until it reaches the Karosta Channel (). North of the Karosta Channel is an area called Karosta which is now fully integrated into Liepaja and is the northernmost district of the city. Liepajas coastline consists of an unbroken sandy beach and dunes as does most of Latvias coastline. The beach of Liep?ja is not as exploited as other places (e.g. the Gulf of Riga, J?rmala and Pärnu in Estonia) but also lacks the tourist infrastructure needed for a fashionable, modern resort.

Economy

In the second half of 20th century under Soviet rule Liep?ja became an industrial city and a large number of high technology plants were founded, including:

Society and culture

Liepaja currently has one cinema, one theater ("Liepajas teatris"), one puppet theater, and two regional newspapers ("Kurzemes V?rds" with a circulation of about 10,000 and "Kursas Laiks" with a circulation of about 6,500). The city also has several regional Internet portals. Web forums, blogs, computer games and social networking sites are very popular among young people.

References

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