Vesterbro (literally, “Western Bridge”) is one of the 15 administrative, statistical, and city tax districts (bydele) comprising the municipality of Copenhagen, Denmark. It covers an area of 3.76 km², and has a population of 51,466 and a population density of 13,688 per km².
Neighboring city districts are:
- to the northeast, the Indre By, also known as “Copenhagen Center” or “Downtown Copenhagen” or “City”
- to the north, Frederiksberg municipality, which is not a part of Copenhagen municipality but rather an enclave surrounded by the municipality
- to the west, Valby
- to the south, Kongens Enghave.
Vesterbro is located just outside Copenhagen’s city center—the Inner City or Indre By—making it a very attractive place to live, as are the other areas immediately outside the center: the Indre Nørrebro (“Inner Nørrebro”), Indre Østerbro (“Inner Østerbro”), Frederiksberg, and Christianshavn.
The district is located west of the city center at the location of the old Western Gate (‘’Vesterport’’), access way into the old city. The gate, along with the other three gates into the old city—Østerport (“Eastern Gate”) near the current Østerport station), Nørreport (“Northern Gate”) near the current Nørreport station, and Amagerport (“Amager Gate”, i.e. functionally the Southern Gate) between Christianshavn and the island of Amager—were dismantled in 1856.
The name “Vesterbro” literally translates into English as “Western Bridge”, and refers to the paved (Danish, brolagt) road leading into the city through the Western Gate. Vesterbro is the area of the bridge into the city of Copenhagen, which was a much smaller city at the time when the name was created. At that time, the city was ringed by a moat which exist today as the Tivoli lake and others.
The area is under the process of being renovated to a great extent and the renovation ended in 2017. The environment and sustainability is one of the essential reasons for the renovation. Vesterbro has a central location that makes it a favored place to live. It has had a reputation as a center for prostitution and drug trafficking, where only the poorest would live, and there is still a certain amount of these activities in the area, especially on Istedgade and near Halmtorvet, but there has been police focus on clearing up troublesome areas. The area is also known as the easy place to get drugs in Copenhagen.