3.4.6 Other relevant issues
The European Capital of Culture in 2010 was along with Istanbul and Pecs the Ruhr district under the title "Essen for the Ruhr", in which 53 cities, towns and parishes in the region joined forces under the motto "Change through Culture – Culture through Change". Confronted by the end of the coal and steel industries, the organisers wanted to react to the new challenges and allow visitors to take part in the "new type of polycentric cultural metropolis". RUHR2010 has brought together the regional players from culture, politics and business into a creative alliance. The programme consisted of three guiding themes: mythology, metropolis and Europe. One of the most popular project within the European Capital of Culture was "Still-Life A40/B1" on 18 July, where 60 kilometres of the motorway were blocked in both directions and lined with 20 000 tables to create a meeting place for different cultures, generations and nations. More than 4.5 million people used the motorway as the "world's longest banquet table" and for cycling. The European Capital of Culture year ended with a finale at four venues: Dortmund, Duisburg, Essen and Gelsenkirchen on the 18 of December – with more than 10 million visitors.
Even though the European Capital of Culture year ended and the RUHR2010 GmbH project entrusted its legacy to new hands, the Regional Association Ruhr, Culture Ruhr Ltd., Ruhr Tourism Ltd. and the European Centre for Creative Economy, in December 2010. These partners have since been supporting sustainable developments in networks and projects that started during the European Capital of Culture year.