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Throughout its history it has been influenced by its geographical position, at the crossroads of German, Slavic and Latin cultures. Although the city is made up of mainly modern architecture, it still has some buildings in the historic center that refer to the Baroque style and Art Nouveau. The factors contributing to its economic situation are the presence of road links, the concentration of industries and scientific research institutes. It was also the World Book Capital in 2010 and received the European Green Capital Award for 2016.

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