Annemasse (French pronunciation: [anmas]; Arpitan: Anemâsse) is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in Eastern France. Even though it covers a relatively small territory (4.98 km2 or 1.92 sq mi), it is Haute-Savoie's second most populous commune after the prefecture Annecy, with 36,250 residents as of 2018.
|Intercommunality||Annemasse – Les Voirons|
|• Mayor (2020–2026)||Christian Dupessey (PS)|
|4.98 km2 (1.92 sq mi)|
|• Density||7,300/km2 (19,000/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+01:00 (CET)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC+02:00 (CEST)|
|Elevation||399–504 m (1,309–1,654 ft) |
(avg. 433 m or 1,421 ft)
|1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.|
Annemasse is part of the Grand Genève (Greater Geneva), a transborder agglomeration between France and Switzerland, which encompasses the developed areas on the southwestern shore of Lake Geneva. It lies near the Swiss border, approximately 8 km (5 mi) east of Geneva. Its railway station is served by TGV, RegioExpress, Léman Express and TER Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes trains.
The origin of the name Annemasse is uncertain. It could come from an Allobroges tribe; it could be derived from the Gallic name Adnamatius; it could be a reference to the Roman city of Annamatia in Pannonia (current-day Hungary). In ancient Roman times, Annemasse, a vicus, was known as Namascae.
Annemasse is part of the metropolitan area of Geneva. It is located 2 km (1.2 mi) southeast of the Swiss border and 45 km (27.9 mi) north of Annecy, the prefecture of Haute-Savoie. The city is surrounded by the Voirons (alt. 1,450 m) to the east and the Salève (alt. 1,300 m) and the Arve River to the west.
The climate is temperate with influences from the Bornes Massif and Lake Geneva. The coldest months are January and February; the hottest are July and August. There is an annual average of 80 days with below zero temperatures. The minimum average is -1 °C and the maximum average is 26 °C. The annual rainfall is 975.7 mm with 118 rainy days a year.
|Source: EHESS and INSEE (1968–2017)|
The urban area of Annemasse, the agglomeration community of Annemasse – Les Voirons, which consists of twelve communes, is the second largest agglomeration in the Haute-Savoie department in terms of population, after the Grand Annecy (Greater Annecy).
Robert Borrel of the Socialist Party (PS) held the mayorship in Annemasse from 1977 to 2008. Fellow party member Christian Dupessay was elected to succeed him following his retirement in 2008. Dupessay was reelected in 2014 and 2020.
The main activity is commerce: due to the current foreign exchange situation, many Swiss residents come to Annemasse to purchase food and other commodities. A large proportion of the population work in Geneva, where the salaries are higher than in France.
Annemasse has 1,898 company locations on its territory, a large share of it being shops and services. The three main companies operating in Annemasse are Parker Hannifin (turnover: €134 million), Siegwerk (€107 million) and Géant Casino Annemasse (€17 million, enlarged in 2003).
Annemasse is an important crossroad. It is the last exit of the French motorway A40 before the border and is thus well connected with the other cities of the region. It is also connected to Annecy via motorway A41.
Local transport is done with 6 bus lines by the TP2A company (Transports publics de l'Agglomération d'Annemasse). A tram is connected to the Swiss border.
Annemasse has had a railway station since 1880. It is the second most important station of the department with 2,000 passengers a day. To encourage mobility, the CEVA project has extended the existing rail connection between Annemasse and Gare de Cornavin through Genève Eaux-Vives.
Annemasse also has a small airport for small tourist and business planes.
- Bois-Livron, Marianne-Cohn, Jean-Mermoz, La Fontaine, Les Hutins, Saint-Exupéry, Académie Montessuit
- Primary schools
- Public schools: Bois-Livron, Marianne-Cohn, Jean-Mermoz, La Fontaine, Les Hutins, Saint-Exupéry, Académie Montessuit
- Privates schools: Chamarette, Saint-François
- Secondary schools
- Michel-Servet, Académie Montessuit, Jacques-Prévert
- High secondary schools
- General education: Les Glières (Formation tertiaire BTS intégré)
- General and technical education: Jean-Monnet
- Professional education: Le Salève
- Other school
- The Beaux Arts School
Annemasse has several religious places. There are two Roman Catholic churches (Saint-André and Saint-Joseph), one synagogue, two Muslim religious organisations, as well as several Protestant churches.
In 1903, 350 years after the dissident Michael Servetus was executed in Geneva at the instigation of John Calvin, a committee was formed to erect a monument in Servetus' honour - led by a French Senator, Auguste Dide, an author of a book on heretics and revolutionaries. The committee commissioned a local Geneva sculptor, Clothilde Roch, to do a statue showing a suffering Servetus. The work was three years in the making and was finished in 1907. However, supporters of Calvin were still strong in Geneva, and the statue was rejected.
The committee then offered the statue to the neighboring Annemasse, which in 1908 placed it in front of the city hall, with the following inscriptions:
“The arrest of Servetus in Geneva, where he did neither publish nor dogmatize, hence he was not subject to its laws, has to be considered as a barbaric act and an insult to the Right of Nations.” Voltaire
"I beg you, shorten please these deliberations. It is clear that Calvin for his pleasure wishes to make me rot in this prison. The lice eat me alive. My clothes are torn and I have nothing for a change, nor shirt, only a worn out vest.” Servetus, 1553
In 1942, the pro-Nazi Vichy Government took down the statue, as it was a celebration of freedom of conscience, and melted it. In 1960, having found the original molds, Annemasse had it recast and returned the statue to its previous place.
Twin towns – sister citiesEdit
Annemasse has friendly relations with:
Arve River near Annemasse
- "Répertoire national des élus: les maires" (in French). data.gouv.fr, Plateforme ouverte des données publiques françaises. 13 September 2022.
- "Populations légales 2019". The National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies. 29 December 2021.
- Téléchargement du fichier d'ensemble des populations légales en 2017, INSEE
- Gilbert Künzi, Lieux-dits entre Dranse et Arve : Chablais savoyard et Faucigny, Éditions Cabédita, 1997, 201 p. ISBN 978-2-88295-203-5
- Henry Suter, « Annemasse » [archive], « Noms de lieux de Suisse romande, Savoie et environs » - henrysuter.ch, 2000-2009 (updated 18 décembre 2009)
- Pierre Broise, « Antiquités gallo-romaine en Faucigny », Bulletin, no XVIII, 1986, p. 249
- Étude d'impact — État initial de l'environnement, dossier de réalisation, « Climatologie d'Annemasse », February 2008.
- Des villages de Cassini aux communes d'aujourd'hui: Commune data sheet Annemasse, EHESS. (in French)
- Population en historique depuis 1968, INSEE
- Groupement transfrontalier européen
- Goldstone, Nancy Bazelon; Goldstone, Lawrence (2003). Out of the Flames: The Remarkable Story of a Fearless Scholar, a Fatal Heresy, and One of the Rarest Books in the World. New York: Broadway. ISBN 0-7679-0837-6.pp. 313-316
- "Jumelage et Pactes d'amitié". annemasse.fr (in French). Annemasse. Retrieved 2021-04-21.