The old Forum Les Halles of Paris !

Let me tell you a bit of old history on one of the new icons of Paris, I first passed by it in 1991 on my visits to France from the USA, Eventually I came with the family in 2004 to see the old Forum Les Halles of Paris, This is a bit of the history after this date ; as I found me an old picture ; hope you enjoy it as I.

By 2004 an architectural competition was launched by the city/town hall of Paris for a total renovation of the Halles quartier or neighborhood. The first works were to start in 2009, The project architectural firm was decided in July 2007 on the future “Carreau des Halles”, with the Canopée, a symbolic heightening of the current Forum des Halles. By April 2010, the work was finally started for the redevelopment of the Halles, and including the reorganization of surface public spaces, the construction of the Canopy, the new garden, the reorganization of underground roads and the redevelopment of the Châtelet-Les-Halles trains station with the Forum and their accesses. The wonderful Canopy was inaugurated in 2016. Going back, way back, this “belly of Paris”, referred to by Emile Zola in the days of the wholesale markets, has become one of the main centers of activity in the city, close to the geographical center of Paris, and at the crossroads of the main lines of the public transport network of the region.

paris les forum halles old entr c2010

In the older days, going back way back they have different markets here such as the Fish market ; installed since the Middle Ages in a triangle to the Saint-Eustache Church near the pillory, the market was rebuilt in the same location in 1822 and transferred in 1857 to Baltard pavilions 9 and 11 at the corner of rue Rambuteau and rue Pierre Lescot, The Cheese market , established to the south of the fish market is installed in a hall built at this location in 1823, also housing a butter and egg market, then transferred in 1857 to Baltard pavilion No. 12 at the corner of rue Berger and rue Pierre Lescot, close to its original location, The meat market was established on the site of the old wheat market when it was installed in 1770 in the building which will be that of the stock exchange (bourse), transferred to the Prouvaires market opened in 1818, then in the Baltard pavilion n° 3 rue Rambuteau south of the Saint-Eustache Church in 1860, The Halle au Blé et aux Flours  was located between rue de la Tonnellerie and rue de la Fromagerie on Place des Halles. This market having become too small, the City decided in 1762 to move the market to a building erected on the site of the Hotel de Soissons, purchased by the city a few years earlier, of which there remains the astronomical column of Catherine de Medici, This Wheat and Flour hall built from 1763 to 1767 was inaugurated in 1770 with its center in the open air, covered by a wooden dome in 1782. This was destroyed by fire in 1802 and replaced by a new structure in iron, first covered with sheets of lead, then with glass, which suffered another fire in 1854. Again renovated, the building became the headquarters of the Stock Exchange (bourse). The meat market is installed on the site of the old wheat market which in 1818 becomes that of the herb market. The Halle aux Herbes was installed in 1818, on the site of the former meat hall which was itself that of the former corn hall before its transfer in 1770 to the building constructed for this purpose which will be by the stock exchange. The herb hall was installed in 1858 in the Baltard no. 7 and no. 8 fruit and vegetable pavilions. The Textile Hall had been established since the 15C between rue de la Poterie and rue de la Petite-Friperie to the south of the carreau des halles square. It was rebuilt under the name Halle aux draps et toiles in 1786. The building was burned down in 1855. Of all the above only two pavilions were saved and reinstalled, one in Nogent-sur-Marne (94 Val de Marne ) and another transported to Yokohama in Japan.

The new Forum Les Halles (see posts) is France’s third busiest shopping center with 26 cinemas ,the busiest swimming pool; a garden of more than four hectares; a network of roads, mainly underground. three media libraries of the City of Paris, two musical ones (one reserved for conservatories, the other open to all audiences), one specialized in cinema, This Forum les Halles and neighborhood are served by the trains station Châtelet – Les Halles metro lines 1, 4 ,7, 11, and 14, as well as by RER A, B, and D lines, The city’s largest station with three RER, five metro, 15 bus and 13 Noctilien lines ! A laberynth to avoid as possible.

The Halles neighborhood or quartier is the 2nd and located in the 1éme arrondissement of Paris. It takes its name from the Halles de Paris, a wholesale market for fresh food products, which was once established in its center. These halls were demolished in the 1970s to make way for the Forum des Halles, with a mainly pedestrian environment, which houses the largest urban station in Europe, Gare de Châtelet – Les Halles.  The limits of the district were fixed in 1859 at the time of the extension of Paris. The boundaries are: Rue de Rivoli to the south; Rue de Marengo and Rue Croix-des-Petits-Champs to the west; rue Étienne-Marcel to the north; and Boulevard Sevastopol to the east. The area was originally made up of swamps crossed by the road from Paris to Saint-Denis. In Merovingian times, a cemetery, later called the Cemetery of the Innocents, was established along this road. A chapel, later transformed into a church by Louis VI le Gros around 1130, was founded there. In 1780, the cemetery of the Innocents was closed for hygienic reasons and the bones were exhumed and transported to the catacombs. The halles closed in 1969. The buildings were destroyed in the 1970s and the Forum des Halles opened in 1979. Much renovated later as above,

Main things to see here are the Saint-Eustache Church, Fountain of the Innocents, Bourse de commerce (Pinault museum) , and the Forum des Halles. All must sees in Paris, me think.

The official Westfield Forum des Halles :

The city of Paris on the old Halles

There you go folks, a dandy spot in gorgeous eternal Paris, one of the places to see while in the city me think. The neighborhood is totally different from my first time there,and better. The Forum des Halles of Paris an icon that lives on in the most beautiful city in the world…

And remember, happy travels good health, and many cheers to all !!!

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