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The big changes and events in Zurich to look forward to in 2023

Sandra Sparrowhawk
Sandra Sparrowhawk - [email protected]
The big changes and events in Zurich to look forward to in 2023
Commuters makes their way after sunset in Zurich West area, on November 29, 2018. (Photo by Fabrice COFFRINI / AFP)

From the return of Zurich’s much-anticipated Züri Fäscht, to upcoming elections and new train links. Here's a look at the big changes and events in Zurich in 2023.


Organic waste collection

Good news for sustainability enthusiasts. From January 1st, 2023, Zurich’s organic waste collection will gradually be extended to the entire city. The previous organic waste subscription will be replaced, and all residents will hence have access to an organic waste container. According to the city’s climate update for 2023, most of the approximately 9,000 additional containers will be distributed over the course of the year.

Cantonal and government council elections

Sunday, February 12th, 2023, will mark the re-election of the government council and the cantonal parliament in the canton of Zurich. The Zurich electorate will then decide who to elect to join the seven-member government council for the 2023 to 2027 term of office. Additionally, the 180 members of the Zurich Cantonal Council will also be newly elected. A possible second ballot for the renewal election of the government council will take place on Sunday, April 16th, 2023.



Zurich’s highly anticipated spring festival will be celebrating its official comeback on April 17th, 2023. The event, which sees guild members dressed in attire parade through the Old Town to later ignite the Böögg (at 6pm sharp!), was not held in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic and in 2021, for the first time in its history, relocated to the Schöllenen Gorge in Canton Uri to prevent crowds gathering. Needless to say, the excitement is ON.

Züri Fäscht

Following a three-year break, the Züri Fäscht is back to take over the city in full force. This summer, the festival, which attracts around two million visitors take over the streets along the River Limmat and around the lake basin, will take place from July 7th through to July 9th 2023. The event features the very Swiss Chilbi, a multitude of food stalls, music and fireworks.

Street parade

The 30th edition of the world’s largest house and techno parade will take place on Saturday, August 12th, 2023, from 1pm to midnight. The event will feature some 30 moving stages (Love Mobiles) and a further eight along the route with a wide selection of music including top DJs, multimedia and laser shows throughout the city and greater Zurich area.


Zurich Openair

While on the topic of festivities, how could we forget Zurich’s Openair Festival which will take place August 23rd to 26th, 2023. Towards the end of the Swiss summer, the city plays host to the Zurich Openair Festival, a four-day event featuring a 3-stage line-up with rock, indie, hip-hop, electronic, and pop stars from around the world. This year’s artists are yet to be announced but last year’s line-up featured iconic acts such as the Arctic Monkeys, Kings of Leon, G-Eazy and James Blake.


One of the largest folk festivals in Zurich, the Knabenschiessen will take place from September 9th to 11th, 2023.

The rifle shooting competition is organised annually by the City of Zurich Rifle Association in Albisgütli and sees local boys and - yes, despite its name - girls, test and demonstrate their shooting skills. The tradition dates back to the 17th century when in 1656 around 150 boys took part in a shooting competition known as “Knaben Schiesset”.

SBB timetable change

Having introduced its new timetable last month, Zurich travellers looking to venture over the border can look forward to more connections in 2023. Thanks to an additional night train to Prague, which runs via Germany, Leipzig and Dresden can now also be reached by night train from Zurich.

The SBB also has good news for those hoping to travel to Stuttgart from Zurich as an additional direct train now goes to the German city. From October 2023, three more direct trains will run on the route.

National and Council of States elections

Federal elections will take place in Switzerland on October 22nd, 2023. It is then that the members of the National and Council of States are elected. This year, the canton of Zurich will have an additional seat at the expense of the canton of Basel-Stadt.

The seats in the National Council are distributed in proportion to the resident population of the cantons, which means that the more people live in a canton, the more seats in the National Council that those canton will have a right to.

Low-traffic Langstrasse

The city of Zurich intends to implement the so-called "Autoarme Langstrasse" project by November 2023. Once enacted, only cyclists, buses and taxis will be allowed to drive on the Langstrasse in both directions during the day. A driving ban for cars will also apply between Brauerstrasse and Dienerstrasse.

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