The city lies on the Traisen river and is located north of the Alps and south of the Wachau. It is part of the Mostviertel, the southwest region of Lower Austria.
The city's main railway station, St. Pölten Hauptbahnhof, is located directly on the West railway of the ÖBB and is also the terminus of the Leobersdorfer Railway, the Mariazellerbahn, the regional railway to Tulln and the regional railway to Krems. It is at the intersection of the Western Motorway A1 and the Kremser Speedway S33, and is traversed by the Vienna Road B1. St Pölten is a junction of the Wieselbus bus lines, which provides radial connections between the capital and the different regions of Lower Austria.
Between 1911 and 1976, a tramline operated in St Pölten. Today, a network of eleven bus lines operates at regular intervals within the city. Every summer, a free tourist train in the city centre connects the ancient parts of the city with the government district.
St Pölten is divided into the following subdistricts: Altmannsdorf, Dörfl at Ochsenburg, Eggendorf, Ganzendorf, Hafing, Harland, Hart, Kreisberg, Matzersdorf, Mühlgang, Nadelbach, Oberradlberg, Oberwagram, Oberzwischenbrunn, Ochsenburg, Pengersdorf, Pottenbrunn, Pummersdorf, Ragelsdorf, Ratzersdorf at the Traisen, Reitzersdorf, Schwadorf, Spratzern, St Georgen on the Steinfelde, St Pölten, Stattersdorf, Steinfeld, Teufelhof, Unterradlberg, Unterwagram, Unterzwischenbrunn, Viehofen, Völtendorf, Waitzendorf, Wasserburg, Weitern, Wetzersdorf, Windpassing, Witzendorf, Wolfenberg, Wörth and Zwerndorf.
The oldest part of the city is built on the site of the ancient Roman city of Aelium Cetium that existed between the 2nd and the 4th century. In the year 799, it was called Treisma. St Pölten did not become a town until 1050 and officially became a city in 1159. Until 1494 St Pölten was part of the diocese of Passau, and then became the property of the state. A Benedictine monastery was founded in 771. In 1081 it hosted the Augustinian Chorherren and in 1784 their Kollegiatsstift closed. Since 1785, this building has hosted the cathedral of St Pölten. The city replaced Vienna as the capital of Lower Austria with a resolution by the Lower Austrian parliament on 10 July 1986. The Lower Austrian government has been hosted in St Pölten since 1997.
The name St Pölten is derived from Hippolytus of Rome. The city was renamed to Sankt Hippolyt, then St Polyt and finally St Pölten.
The municipal council consists of 42 members and since the municipal elections in 2016 it consists of the following parties:26 Social Democratic Party of Austria (SPÖ) – the mayor and the first vice mayor
9 Austrian People's Party (ÖVP) – the second vice mayor
1 The Greens - The Green Alternative
The city's senate consists of 11 members:SPÖ: Martin Fuhs, Mag. Renate Gamsjäger, Engineer Franz Gunacker, Robert Laimer, Wolfgang Nowak, Mag. Johann Rankl, Mag. Ingrid Heihs
ÖVP: Alfred Neuhauser, Josef Fraberger
Greens: Silvia Buschenreiter
On 9 July 2004 the municipal council elected the former senator for culture Mag. Matthias Stadler (SPÖ) as the new mayor of St Pölten. The first vice mayor is Susanne Kysela (SPÖ); the second vice mayor is Johannes Sassmann (ÖVP).
The arms' blazon is silver and azure; on the right a fess gules, on the left a wolf rampant silver langued gules and armed Or.
The colours of the city are red and yellow. The seal of the city contains its coat of arms surrounded by the text Landeshauptstadt St. Pölten. The administration's seal of the magistrate also contains the city's coat of arms with the text Magistrat der Stadt St. Pölten.
As of 15 May 2001, 40,041 people worked in 2,711 companies in the city. 23 of those companies are large-scale enterprises with more than 200 employees each.
Several media companies are based in St Pölten. These are "@cetera", a literary-cultural magazine; "City-Flyer", an online magazine describing the cultural offerings of the city, which is published on paper monthly; "Campus Radio", a radio station from the University of Applied Sciences; "HiT FM", a radio station broadcasting in Lower Austria; "LetHereBeRock", an online youth magazine about the alternative rock scene; NÖN, a Lower Austrian newspaper; the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation for Lower Austria; and the local television channel "P3tv".
The largest companies based in St Pölten are the furniture producer Leiner, the paper manufacturer Salzer, and the family owned engineering conglomerate Voith.Bundesgymnasium and Bundesrealgymnasium St. Pölten  (public gymnasium)
Public educational facility for kindergarten pedagogy and social pedagogy
Public economics school and economics academy
Bundesreal- and Bundesoberstufenrealgymnasium (BORG) Schulring (public high-level gymnasium)
St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences (fields: computer simulation, media management, social work, telecommunication and media)
Public higher educational facility for professions in economics and school for social professions
Public higher technical educational facility and laboratory (fields: EDP and organisation, electronics, electrical engineering, machine engineering, economic engineering) with university of applied sciences for machine construction
New Design University (interior architecture and graphics design)
Lower Austrian state academy
Folk high school
Lower Austrian institute for promotion of economy development (WIFI)
Swimming is available at Aquacity (indoor swimming pool), the St. Pölten outdoor swimming pool and Ratzersdorf Lake (a bathing pond where a nudist beach, beach volleyball, and miniature golf) are available. For fitness training there is the City-Treff - Pueblo, the Lifeline, the Reebok and the Seepark. In addition, the city has:American Football Club - St. Pölten Invaders
Golf club St. Pölten
Skittles at the leisure park Megafun
Miniature golf at the Tennis-Allround Center
Model aircraft airport of the BSV VOITH
Riding club St. Pölten-Wagram
Shooting range of the private Schützenkompagnie
Gliding club St. Pölten
St Pölten hosts a primary base of the Lower Austrian state sports school.
Every year in the third week of May the ATP tournament takes place in St Pölten. There are multiple local tennis stadiums, including the Arena im Aufeld, the tennis centre Allround, the tennis courts by the local ice sport association 1872, the courts in St. Georgen, the courts at the Ratzersdorfer Pond, the courts in the Lower Austrian state sports school and the courts of the leisure park Megafun.
St Pölten is twinned with the following cities: Altoona, Pennsylvania, USA
Brno, Czech Republic
Clichy, Hauts-de-Seine, Île-de-France, France
Heidenheim, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Lower Austrian state theatre
Bühne im Hof
Festspielhaus St. Pölten
Diocese museum St. Pölten
Museum im Hof
Lower Austrian state museum
Lower Austrian documentation institute for modern art
Private museum "Wilhelmsburger ornament and utensil dishes"
City museum St. Pölten
Repertory theatre Cinema Paradiso
Klangturm (tower), the city's landmark
Stadtsäle (public event hall)
Youth culture hall frei.raum
VAZ (Veranstaltungszentrum, event-centre)
Drunter & Drüber (≈"haywire"; "higgledy-piggledy"; "topsy-turvy"), a pub in the inner city
Business Center Niederösterreich
Apotheke zum goldenen Löwen (pharmacy since 1545), oldest shop in town, famous baroque facing
ATP tennis tournament
Cinema at the cathedral (Film am Dom)
Capital city festival
International culture and film festival
St Pölten festival weeks "Klangweile"
St Pölten Höfefest
FM4 Frequency Festival
Martin Fiala, composer
Jörg Demus, (born 1928), pianist
Alfred Gusenbauer, (born 1960), politician (SPÖ) and former chancellor of Austria
Andreas Lattner, computer scientist
Erwin Leder, (born 1951), actor (Das Boot, Underworld)
Karl Österreicher (1923–1995), conductor, music educator
Julius Raab, (1891-1964), conservative politician, chancellor of Austria 1953-1961
Mario Ranieri, DJ and producer
Bernhard Wicki, actor and director
Lolita, singer and actress
Don Manuel, Portuguese Infant, younger brother of King John V, lived in St Pölten for some time in the 1730s
Oliver Stummvoll, model
Klaus Nüchtern: Kleines Gulasch in St. Pölten (German): ISBN 3-85439-306-7
Thomas Karl: St. Pölten - Ein Wandel durch die Zeit (German): ISBN 3-89702-641-4
Otto Kapfinger, Michaela Steiner: St. Pölten neu (German): ISBN 3-211-82954-7