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Status: Active
Language: German
Registry Provider: Knipp
Type: Generic
Category: Culture
Priority #: 120 - Regiodot GmbH & Co. KG

More information: NTLDStatsLogo.png

.ruhr is an active gTLD that was proposed in ICANN's New gTLD Program. The Registry and manager of the TLD is Regiodot GmbH & Co. KG.[1] The string refers to a metropolitan area in Germany, though technically does not qualify as a geographic TLD and so did not apply as such. The proposed application succeeded and was delegated to the Root Zone on 10 December, 2013.[2]

Application Excerpt

The following is excerpted from the applicant´s response to question #18:

"The .RUHR TLD is designed to serve the needs of the community of citizens, organizations and institutions in the “Ruhrgebiet” area on the Internet. The unique string .RUHR is a commonly known abbreviation for the Ruhrgebiet. The Ruhrgebiet, which will be presented in more detail below, is a conglomerate of Cities in Germany, which has developed a strong regional identity and the proposed TLD shall serve as a token of this common identity on the Internet. Already now, there are thousands of domain names containing the string “RUHR” at the second level, which shows that Internet users are already using this abbreviation for their presence in the region.

  • The Ruhrgebiet

The Ruhrgebiet (in English language “Ruhr Area”), is an urban area in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. With 4435 km² and a population of some 5.17 million (2009), it is the largest urban agglomeration in Germany. It consists of several large, formerly industrial cities bordered by the rivers Ruhr (eponym of the Ruhrgebiet) to the south, Rhine to the west, and Lippe to the north. In the Southwest it borders to the Bergisches Land. It is considered part of the larger Rhine-Ruhr metropolitan region of more than 12 million people. From west to east, the region includes the cities of Duisburg, Oberhausen, Bottrop, Muelheim an der Ruhr, Essen, Gelsenkirchen, Bochum, Herne, Hagen, Dortmund, and Hamm, as well as parts of the more ʺruralʺ districts Wesel, Recklinghausen, Unna and Ennepe-Ruhr-Kreis. Historically, the western Ruhr towns, such as Duisburg and Essen, belonged to the historic region of the Rhineland, whereas the eastern part of the Ruhr, including Gelsenkirchen, Bochum, Dortmund and Hamm, were part of the region of Westphalia. Since the 19th century, these districts have grown together into a large complex with a vast industrial landscape, inhabited by some 7.3 million people (when including Duesseldorf and Wuppertal). It is the fourth largest urban area in Europe after Moscow, London and Paris. In 2010, the Ruhr region was one of the European Capitals of Culture

  • The introduction of .RUHR is supported by relevant organisations and local authorities in the Ruhrgebiet such as the leading Ruhr Regional Association (RVR).The Ruhr Regional Association, with its offices in Essen, is the regional hub of the 11 independent municipalities and four districts of the Ruhr Metropolis with its approx. 5.2 million inhabitants.The Ruhr Regional Association is responsible for the regional planning for the Ruhr region. It is the sponsor of significant infrastructure project such as the Industrial Heritage Trail and the Emscher Landscape Park. The Ruhr Regional Association has been working on improving the quality of life in the Ruhr region for more than 80 years. It maintains and preserves green open spaces for recreation and leisure.Its legal functions also include the regional business and tourism development, as well as public relations for the Ruhr Metropolis. Together with its municipal partners it carries the seven Ruhr region and leisure parks.The Ruhr Regional Association also collects geo and climate data about the region and makes it accessible to its member municipalities, amongst others for planning reasons.* Economic transformation *
  • The name “RUHR” does not qualify as a geographic name according to the specifications of the question and the Applicant Guidebook. However we have requested a statement of the regional government of North Rhine-Westphalia regarding this questions. The responsible government answered that “RUHR” does not qualify as a geographic name that requires support-letters from governments.

The goal of providing a trustworthy namespace is supported by the .RUHR Eligibility Policy, which requires registrants who do not have a place of general jurisdiction in Germany to name an Admin-C in Germany to provide for an efficient enforcement of applicable laws and contractual sanctions since service of writs or other correspondence can be made to the Admin-C."[3]

Contract Signed

In October 2013, the applicant received a Registry Agreement signed by ICANN for .ruhr after passing the Initial Evaluation.[4]

Delegation and Availability

.ruhr was delegated to the Root Zone of the DNS on 10 December 2013, completing the successful application for the string.[2]


The Registry announced that the Sunrise Period for the string would begin 21 January 2014 and end on 20 February 2014.[5]