A look again at Montparnasse, Paris!

There are strikes in France, but hardly anybody notice at least me. This is routine for us here, and the strikes are now even schedule ahead of time and in intervals. I do go to Paris each month on business nowdays from Brittany, so my entry point has change from when I lived in Versailles; there it was glorious to go on the rive droite train station to gare Saint Lazare in Paris.

Nowdays from beautiful Brittany , I go in by Montparnasse for the last few years. I can go out from Auray or Vannes, the latter is better equipped and nicer parking ,free are both on sections on back of Vannes. I will be there tomorrow again, and will take a look at all the construction they are talking about in the Montparnasse district covering several neighborhoods. Glad is only once per month trips!!!

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The Gare Montparnasse is up for a renewal after 25 years is about time. Eventually, the station will be brighter, more open to the city, and equipped with more waiting spaces dedicated to passengers. It will also total 19,000 square meters of shops, restaurants, or other co-working spaces.

The Gare Montparnasse is a beauty. Starting with the repair of its 250 linear meters of exterior facade.  The façade – which also has large windows – is covered with aluminium panels adorning the walls of the railway station.  These frescoes dating from the beginning of the  1970’s  go on their side to be renovated. A glass walkway will also be created in the Hall to provide a walking space.

Inside the station, it is both better to manage the flow of passengers (notably by creating 14 additional escalators, which will bring their number to 39), to enlarge the reception space allocated to the public and to create businesses spaces. The creation of large bays windows allows to open the station on the district (on the side of the Avenue du Maine), while it turned so far back to the city. The traveller arriving from the province will thus have a view of the Montparnasse Tower-also in the process of being renovated, the glass windows also allow to bring in a maximum of light in a building particularly dark and cold. New materials – granite, bamboo…-are also introduced to end the All-concrete scene.

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One of the challenges of this monumental project is to carry out the work while keeping the station active. The first tranche of work (Commandant Mouchotte side) will be completed next November – with the opening of a part of the shops. The second instalment (Vaugirard side) will end in November 2019. The final delivery (center of the station) is programmed at the end of 2020 the space, the first service to be relocated, is currently forming along Pier 24. In parallel, on the Océane front side, a huge tarp conceals the passengers from a double panoramic lift access to the quays. These first developments will be discovered during October in the station.

Two new TGV lines destined for Bordeaux and Rennes, inaugurated in early July, sound the beginnings of this evolution. The renovation of two lounges, including that of the frequent flyer, was completed just in time for this event. The real big construction site has been in installation for several weeks, occupying almost all of the place Raoul Dautry and seriously impacting the passenger routes inside the station, especially the users of the Metro. The work is expected to begin in September and will be done in 3 phases:

Phase 1: Building on the street side of Commandant Mouchotte, until the end 2018

Phase 2: Part of the building at the corner of Boulevard de Vaugirard and place Raoul Dautry, end 2018 to end 2019

Phase 3: Central part, from end 2019 to end 2020.

Panoramic elevators/ lifts will be installed in a SNCF/RATP exchange room, as 70% of the station’s users arrive by Metro. will also be arranged 19 additional escalators, with the introduction of three “sense of departure” against only one today, and four “senses arrive” against two today. Photo credit Le Monde newspaper.

renovation quartier montparnasse

A few steps from the train station, another shopping centre, Gaîté-Montparnasse, undertook, in the summer of 2017, its renovation project underway will include a  E Leclerc hypermarket center, perhaps followed by an Ikea store. Above the train station, opposite the Atlantic Garden, the NOC Bar envisages a refreshment and the premises of the Museum of General Leclerc, which will move, are the subject of a call for projects of the city of Paris.  This is a vast renovation, to last for years in a perimeter which is an important gateway to the Paris . The first phase of the work could be programmed to end in the spring of 2024, then a second start in the fall, after the Olympics in Paris.

The neighborhood of Pasteur-Montparnasse will have renovations too. The Post office museum, which celebrated its 70 years in June 2016, is currently under construction. The institution, located on Boulevard de Vaugirard, will be completely transformed. Only the facade panels, signed by the sculptor Robert Juvin, will be preserved. The reopening has been done already. Current 2019, the Museum of General Leclerc/Musée de la Liberation – Musée Jean Moulin will take a new location. Located at the level of the Atlantic Garden, above the Gare Montparnasse, the establishment is difficult to reach and suffers from a lack of visibility ,a new establishment will be on the Boulevard Pasteur (between n ° 24 and 30) .Adjacent to a Jardin des Simples  proposing the cultivation of aromatic plants and herbal teas by rue du doctor Roux, will complete this project.

Farewell, two-wheeler (motos) stationed permanently on the Boulevard of Vaugirard.  A portion of the central aisle will soon be returned to pedestrians. The boulevards Pasteur and Vaugirard are going to be vegetated in two stages. The first one will be the Boulevard Pasteur with the layout of the small square located at the entrance of the subway Pasteur.  Other novelty, since the night of February 26, 2018, an intelligent night lighting system is been tested by Evesa in the Rue Antoine Bourdelle.

More on the renovation and work sites at the city of Paris in French: City of Paris renovations and works

And the report is the pictures, well there is lots of work going on and some areas are completely covered ,but you can’t hardly notice it, and all is smoothly flowing, that is Montparnasse. You are welcome to Paris.

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Another good day in Paris. It is always good to come back once in a while for personal reasons it took two months to come back, and it was missed the monthly trips. Paris is eternal you know, and once bitten by the virus you will always come back or we will always have Paris , right!

Remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!

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One Comment to “A look again at Montparnasse, Paris!”

  1. I’d love to see all that when it is finished. I am sure I will make it to Paris one day…

    Liked by 1 person

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