Istedgade (also called Strassen) is a 1-kilometer straight street in the district of Vesterbro in the Danish capital, Copenhagen. It starts at Copenhagen Central Station and runs parallel to Vesterbrogade to Enghave Plads and Enghaveparken. From the station in the cheap hotel district, it runs through the porn, prostitution and drugs area to modern Vesterbro, where 1900s tenement style blocks have undergone significant modernisation. It is generally considered the heart of Vesterbro and was a main traffic artery until 2013 where the street had traffic reducing measures installed.
Istedgade's history dates back to 1858, when the first buildings were completed around Gasvejen (today called Gasværksvej), but it was not until 1859 that Istedgade got its official name, the street subsequently growing rapidly towards the railway station, and in 1900 Istedgade reached Enghave Plads. The street is named in memory of the 1850 Battle of Isted in the First Schleswig War. Istedgade soon became known for being a colourful entertainment area, with its wild inns and prostitution. During World War II, Istedgade was known for its resistance to the Germans and the resistance group Holger Danske was founded in the back room of "Stjerne Radio" at no. 31, which is today a museum. During the Summer 1944 strike, there was a violent clash between the inhabitants of Vesterbro and the German military. After the "porn release" in 1969, Istedgade became one of the streets where almost every other store sold magazines, sex toys, etc.
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