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Bundesautobahn 6

Bundesautobahn 6

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, also known as Via Carolina (between Nürnberg and the Czech border continuing to Prague
Prague
Prague is the capital and largest city of the Czech Republic. Situated in the north-west of the country on the Vltava river, the city is home to about 1.3 million people, while its metropolitan area is estimated to have a population of over 2.3 million...

) is a 477 km (296.4 mi) long German autobahn. It starts at the French
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 border near Saarbrücken
Saarbrücken
Saarbrücken is the capital of the state of Saarland in Germany. The city is situated at the heart of a metropolitan area that borders on the west on Dillingen and to the north-east on Neunkirchen, where most of the people of the Saarland live....

 in the west and end at the Czech
Czech Republic
The Czech Republic is a landlocked country in Central Europe. The country is bordered by Poland to the northeast, Slovakia to the east, Austria to the south, and Germany to the west and northwest....

 border near Waidhaus
Waidhaus
Waidhaus is a municipality in the district of Neustadt in Bavaria in Germany. It lies near the border with Czech Republic, and near the major border crossing between Bavaria and Czech Republic, where Bavaria A6 meets the Czech D5 motorway...

 in the east.

The first plans for the A 6 were laid out in 1935, construction on several parts began in 1938. In 1940, construction near Mannheim
Mannheim
Mannheim is a city in southwestern Germany. With about 315,000 inhabitants, Mannheim is the second-largest city in the Bundesland of Baden-Württemberg, following the capital city of Stuttgart....

 was stopped when the Theodor Heuss Bridge (Frankenthal)
Theodor Heuss Bridge (Frankenthal)
The Theodor-Heuss-Rhine River Bridge also known as the Autobahnbrücke Frankenthal is a bridge that spans the Rhine River along Autobahn 6 and connects the regions of Rhineland-Palatinate with Baden-Wuerttemberg...

 across the Rhine collapsed, killing many workers. A new bridge was opened in 1953. Other parts of the A 6 were completed in 1941. A part near Kaiserslautern
Kaiserslautern
Kaiserslautern is a city in southwest Germany, located in the Bundesland of Rhineland-Palatinate at the edge of the Palatinate forest . The historic centre dates to the 9th century. It is from Paris, from Frankfurt am Main, and from Luxembourg.Kaiserslautern is home to 99,469 people...

 was used as an airstrip by the Luftwaffe
Luftwaffe
Luftwaffe is a generic German term for an air force. It is also the official name for two of the four historic German air forces, the Wehrmacht air arm founded in 1935 and disbanded in 1946; and the current Bundeswehr air arm founded in 1956....

 during World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

. After the war, it was taken over by US forces and became the Ramstein Air Base
Ramstein Air Base
Ramstein Air Base is a United States Air Force base in the German state of Rheinland-Pfalz. It serves as headquarters for the United States Air Forces in Europe and is also a North Atlantic Treaty Organization installation...

, while the A 6 was re-built south of the air base.


In the 1960s, construction was continued. One new section cut through the Hockenheimring
Hockenheimring
The Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg is an automobile racing track situated near the town of Hockenheim in Baden-Württemberg, Germany, located on Bertha Benz Memorial Route. Amongst other motor racing events, it biennially hosts the Formula One German Grand Prix...

, requiring a major redesign of the race track which resulted in the construction of the Motodrom stadium.

Much like its southern counterpart, the A 8
Bundesautobahn 8
is an autobahn in southern Germany that runs 497 km from the Luxembourg A13 motorway at Schengen via Neunkirchen, Pirmasens, Karlsruhe, Stuttgart, Ulm, Augsburg and Munich to the Austrian West Autobahn near Salzburg....

, the A 6 is relatively old and has received little upgrading, making it difficult for it to handle today's traffic. The section around Mannheim
Mannheim
Mannheim is a city in southwestern Germany. With about 315,000 inhabitants, Mannheim is the second-largest city in the Bundesland of Baden-Württemberg, following the capital city of Stuttgart....

 is currently being widened and modernised from a four-lane to a six-lane motorway requiring the construction of a new bridge over the River Neckar
Neckar
The Neckar is a long river, mainly flowing through the southwestern state of Baden-Württemberg, but also a short section through Hesse, in Germany. The Neckar is a major right tributary of the River Rhine...

.

The direct motorway connection between Prague and Paris
Paris
Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...

 was completed when the last missing section between junction Amberg
Amberg
Amberg is a town in Bavaria, Germany. It is located in the Upper Palatinate, roughly halfway between Regensburg and Bayreuth. Population: 44,756 .- History :...

-Ost and interchange Oberpfälzer Wald
Upper Palatinate Forest
The Upper Palatinate Forest is a mountain range on the European continent that is divided between Germany and the Czech Republic. The German side of the range is in the Upper Palatinate region of Bavaria and borders the Bavarian Forest...

was inaugurated on 10 September 2008.