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Boulogne-Billancourt

 

Boulogne-Billancourt is a French commune in Hauts-de-Seine and the metropolis of Greater Paris in the Île-de-France region, the most populous of the Paris region after Paris. It results from the reunion, carried out under the name of Boulogne sur Seine in 1790, of Boulogne la Petite, a parish built in 1343 around the church of Notre Dame de Boulogne sur Seyne, and the right bank of Saint-Cloud. The name of Boulogne Billancourt, adopted late in 1926, acts the dismantling, for the benefit of the 16th arrondissement, of the vast territory of Longchamp and the Bois de Boulogne, and the addition, granted in 1860 as compensation, of Billancourt, a gap of Auteuil became the historic stronghold of Renault factories between the wars.

Major economic center of Île-de-France and the most highly educated city in France, Boulogne-Billancourt hosted in 2006 a dozen thousand companies, which places it in the rank of second park in the Paris region after Paris. Although having on average one of the wealthiest populations in the Paris region, it cultivates a social balance between the elegant mansions of the Parc des Princes, and the modern residences built along the Seine on the former industrial zone bombed during the Second World War.

The cultural golden age of Boulogne-Billancourt was undoubtedly the period between the wars, and more precisely that of the 1930s, of which it has the most important architectural heritage in France. It was also during the first half of the twentieth century that Boulogne-Billancourt became the city of aircraft engines and cinema, and saw the establishment of the vast factories of the car manufacturer Renault. Now almost entirely demolished, they have given way to a vast cultural center and a public garden including La Seine Musicale by Shigeru Ban and Jean de Gastines inaugurated on April 22, 2017.

 

History

The future Boulogne is in the High Middle Ages a green and wooded countryside where stands around 630, the bridge of Saint-Cloud and around 841, the royal gallows. From 1109, a logging hamlet in the parish of Auteuil, Les Menuls-lès-Saint-Cloud, was transformed into a wine-growing village, illustrating the Capetian renaissance that was exalted in 1260 by the construction on its communal land by Saint Isabelle de the Abbey of Longchamp, future center of the cultural life of the Parisian aristocracy, and which culminates locally in 1330 with the erection at its southern edge of the Notre-Dame church by Philippe le Long. This second prestigious building is redoubled by the institution according to the will of the late Philippe le Bel, father of the king, of what will become the main pilgrimage of Parisians and of the accession that same year to the status of independent parish: Boulogne-la -Small.

From the 16th century village to the 20th century town
The development of the launderers' suburbs under Louis XIV: Boulogne was destroyed, it seems, during the Hundred Years War and resumed its development when François I moved to the castle of Boulogne north of Longchamp, then territory bolted. After the Fronde and the transfer of the Court to Versailles, connected by a new bridge, then to Saint-Cloud under the Regency and until the installation in this same castle of the Queen, who also had her road built in 1760 , the courtiers, going or coming back from Paris by these new ways, cover the parish of resorts like the old manse of Billancourt. Simultaneously, one, then two suburbs of launderers in their service are formed at each entrance to the village.
During the Revolution, the village of Boulogne la Petite was enlarged by almost a third by acquiring the territory owned by Saint-Cloud along the right bank of the Seine and the town adopted in 1790 the name of Boulogne-sur-Seine.
Urbanization in the mid-nineteenth century: very fashionable under the Consulate and the Empire, the city urbanized in the nineteenth century and saw itself reduced by Longchamp under the Second Empire and then enlarged, in 1860, by the Parc des Princes fitted out by Haussmann and de Billancourt fitted out by Baron de Gourcuff. The fighting and the Prussian occupation following the siege of Paris during the 1970 war ruined Boulogne. However, it will wait until 1926 to adopt the name of Boulogne-Billancourt.
Industrialization after the war of 1870: the Belle Époque saw the birth of the aeronautical and automobile industry, Farman, Salmson and above all Renault, whose factories ended up covering a large part of the territory.
The modernist city of the interwar period: the working-class suburb that it became before the 1914-1918 war was transformed between the two wars by André Morizet into a city with the typical architecture of the Thirties where s French cinema flourishes.

 

Location
Boulogne-Billancourt is a town west of Paris. It is bounded to the south and west by a loop of the Seine, to the east by the 16th arrondissement of Paris and to the north by the Bois de Boulogne (which is part of Paris). It is the first town downstream from Paris. Its central position on the old east-west road to Versailles, on the right bank of the Seine, between the Louvre palace and the courtyard, is at the origin of its development. Today, it continues to develop thanks to its intermediate position on the north-south axis between the economic centers of La Défense and Vélizy-Villacoublay.

To the south-west of the city, is the Seguin Island, the former historic center of Renault and symbol of Boulogne-Billancourt's industrial past. The town also has 33.44 ha of green spaces, almost half of which make up the Edmond-de-Rothschild park (15 ha), located to the north-west of the town (Menus - Jean-Baptiste-Clément district).

In 1860, the city of Paris absorbed the territory of the old communes which were inside the fortifications of Thiers. The part of the former communes of Auteuil and Passy located outside the line of defense was then allocated to Boulogne-Billancourt in compensation for the loss of most of Longchamp, expropriated to make a racecourse and attached to the woods from Boulogne.

Geology and relief
The area of ​​the municipality is 617 hectares; the altitude varies from 28 to 40 meters.

The Boulogne-Billancourt site is characterized by the presence of a low plain surrounded by the Seine. It is the last space available to dense urbanization west of Paris before the heights of the west bank of the Seine. The contrast between these green areas and the western part of the Parisian urban fabric that is Boulogne-Billancourt is striking.

The soil consists of sand, alluvium and gravel and was therefore unsuitable for cultivation. However, wheat, rye, and oats were cultivated there thanks to the mud from the Parisian roads that was spread. The expansion of laundry in the seventeenth century is explained by the existence of these poor lands and these flat lands (for spreading) and by the presence of shallow water allowing easy digging of wells.

This situation strongly exposes Boulogne-Billancourt to 100-year floods, such as that of 1910.

Weather
Like that of Paris and the departments of the inner suburbs, the climate of Boulogne-Billancourt is of a degraded oceanic type. The most used observation station for meteorology in Boulogne-Billancourt is that of Paris-Montsouris, south of Paris, in the immediate vicinity.

 

Communication routes and transport

Roads
Former place of pilgrimage, Boulogne-Billancourt has developed due to its central position between the Louvre and the royal residences around three penetrating, the King's pavement (now the avenue Jean-Baptiste-Clément), the route de la Reine leading to the Saint-Cloud bridge, the green path extended by the road to the old Sèvres bridge (today doubled by the Édouard-Vaillant and General-Leclerc avenues). The city was saved from the congestion induced by this crossing position by the development of bypass ring roads wanted by the mayor Georges Gorse. Today, the city is served by the A 13 motorway, bypassing it to the north between the town and the Bois de Boulogne, and the national quays road, connecting the Georges-Pompidou route from the south to the N 118 at the bridge of Sèvres.

 

In all, Boulogne-Billancourt has 70 km of roads, including 50 km of municipal roads. The main roads in the city are Boulevard d'Auteuil, Avenue Jean-Baptiste-Clément (RD 103), Route de la Reine (RD 907), Avenue du Général-Leclerc and Avenue Édouard-Vaillant (RD 910 ), Boulevard de la République and Avenue André-Morizet (RD 50) and Boulevard Jean-Jaurès (RD 2 to route de la Reine). Avenue Jean-Baptiste-Clément is the former Main Street of the village of Boulogne-sur-Seine: opened in the seventeenth century to lead the Parisian aristocracy to the castle of Saint-Cloud, in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries it will be the center of Boulonnaise life, commerce and bourgeois dwellings. The Queen's Road was built at the end of the 18th century according to Marie-Antoinette of Austria's desire to take a more direct route to reach the Château de Saint-Cloud, her new residence. The avenues of Général-Leclerc and Édouard-Vaillant were opened at the beginning of the nineteenth century at the same time as the construction of the new Sèvres bridge, to replace the old road to Versailles (now rue du Vieux-Pont-de-Sèvres) which linked Paris to the old bridge. Avenue André-Morizet and Boulevard de la République were built at the beginning of the 20th century to connect the left bank of the Seine to the Saint-Cloud bridge. Finally, the boulevard Jean-Jaurès was completed in 1871, under the leadership of Baron Haussmann who wanted to link the southern suburbs of the capital to the Bois de Boulogne. It was then called Boulevard de Strasbourg, to honor the army of this city which was under attack by the Prussian army. It gradually became the main shopping artery of the city, to the detriment of Avenue Jean-Baptiste-Clément. This route is a Boulogne illustration of Haussmannian perspectives; the prefect of the Seine indeed wanted the axis of the boulevard to be such that we could see the spire of the Notre-Dame church from the Billancourt bridge.

Due to its geographical location, Boulogne-Billancourt is a city of transit, and therefore of intense passage, between Paris and its suburbs. During rush hour, the city experiences many traffic jams, particularly in its squares (Rhine-et-Danube roundabout, Place Marcel-Sembat, etc.).

Parking
The city of Boulogne Billancourt has very few parking spaces for two-wheelers, and hardly any near the Parc des Princes.

On November 6, 2002, the city equipped all its parking meters with the Moneo card payment system. Of its 668 parking meters, Boulogne-Billancourt has 230 mixed parking meters (accepting payment by card or by coins) and 438 Moneo card parking meters. In April 2007, a municipal report indicates that the system is underused by the Boulonnais.

Visitors have more than 1,000 parking spaces for two wheels and 3,106 underground parking spaces for cars in eight paid public garages in addition to the spaces available in three shopping centers.

Four are permanently open at the gates of the city:
Point-du-Jour (525 places);
Pont-de-Sèvres Sous-Préfecture (568 places);
Parchamp (315 places);
Cours de l'Île-Seguin (600 places).

Two, in the city center, allow you to go out at any time:
Les Passages (600 seats);
Hôtel-de-Ville (600 places).

The others are closed at night and sometimes on Saturday or Sunday:
Marcel-Sembat shopping center (82 places including 4 for recharging electric cars);
Pont de Sèvres shopping center;
Shopping center at the crossroads of Route de la Reine and Rue de Silly;
Belle-feuille (287 places);
Billancourt market (211 places).

The garage on rue Heyrault (98 spaces) is reserved for subscribers.

The availability of garages is indicated in real time on panels distributed over the main roads.

Self-service transport
Autolib
In the second half of 2010, Boulogne, like eighty municipalities in the inner suburbs, will offer self-service cars. Thirteen stations will offer non-polluting vehicles. Parking areas will be reserved in underground garages.

Vélib
On July 11, 2008, the Council of State authorized the extension of the Vélib 'network beyond the limits of the capital and its extension to some thirty municipalities, including Boulogne-Billancourt. The phase of setting up stations in Boulogne-Billancourt begins on January 19, 2009 around the town hall and the Grand-Place. On March 31, 21 stations, including five doubles, able to accommodate 650 bikes, were inaugurated in the presence of Pierre-Christophe Baguet and the mayor of Paris Bertrand Delanoë, making Boulogne-Billancourt the first city of Île-de-France after Paris to acquire the self-service bicycle system.

 

Cycle paths
The arrival of Vélib 'however raises the problem of the scarcity of cycle paths in the town. Indeed, many residents, especially among the Greens, denounce a road that is not ready to accommodate cyclists, because of the traffic too heavy and therefore too dangerous for bicycles. In response, the town hall expressed its desire to strengthen its network of "soft lanes", ie streets limited to 30 km / h.

Public transport
Subway
Boulogne-Billancourt is served by two lines of the Paris metropolitan network. You can access the center and the south of the town at the Marcel Sembat, Billancourt and Pont de Sèvres stations on line 9. The extension of this line to Boulogne-Billancourt is of historic significance, since it was inaugurated on February 3, 1934, the first extension of the Paris metro in the suburbs. The two other Boulogne stations, Boulogne - Jean Jaurès and Boulogne - Pont de Saint-Cloud, on line 10, are much more recent. Opened on October 3, 1980 and October 2, 1981 respectively, they are the result of a desire to better serve the city, in particular its northern part.

Bus
Boulogne-Billancourt benefits from wide coverage by the Île-de-France bus networks, i.e. nearly thirty lines throughout the town. The best-served sites are those located on the outskirts of the city: the Pont de Billancourt to the south, the Pont de Sèvres and the Pont de Saint-Cloud to the west, the Anciens-Combattants crossroads (Porte de Boulogne) to the north and the Porte de Saint-Cloud to the east. But also those in the center of the town, in particular Place Marcel-Sembat and the town hall.

With 20 lines, the RATP bus network is the most present in the town. The RATP 123 is one of the lines most used by Boulonnais, since it crosses the city from south to north on its main axis which is Boulevard Jean Jaurès. RATP also operates an interurban transport line in Boulogne-Billancourt, the SUBB (Urban Service of Boulogne-Billancourt or Urban Service Val de Seine). Operating from Monday to Saturday and completely free, the line operates two different circuits: one called the "north loop" (serving among others the town hall, Place Marcel-Sembat and the Parchamp) and the other called " southern loop ”(serving, among other things, the town hall, the Belle Feuilles cultural center and the Boulogne ice rink). Boulogne-Billancourt is also crossed by line 460 of the Transdev establishment in Nanterre, which connects La Celle-Saint-Cloud station to the north of the town. The Noctilien network also includes three lines stopping at Boulogne, in particular at Marcel-Sembat: the N12, the N61 and the N145. Finally, the town is served by line 17 of the Hourtoule transport company which is based in Plaisir in the Yvelines.

The town is therefore served by the following bus lines:
by lines 42, 52, 72, 123, 126, 160, 169, 171, 175, 179, 189, 241, 260, 289, 291, 389, 426, 467 and SUBB of the RATP bus network;
by lines 40 and 42 of the Phébus bus network;
by line 17 of the Hourtoule transport company;
by line 460 from the Transdev establishment in Nanterre;
by line 39.34 of the SAVAC transport company;
by lines N12, N61 and N145.

River ports
Three million tonnes of goods, equivalent to 150,000 trucks, pass through the quays of Boulogne-Billancourt each year. From upstream to downstream, every 1 to 1.8 kilometers, there are four small freight stations (no containers) managed by the Agence centrale des Ports de Paris on the right bank of the Seine. It's about :

from the Port des Studios, Quai du Point-du-Jour, downstream from the Pont d'Issy, opposite the Pierre-Grenier cemetery (the port of Point-du-Jour is located upstream in the territory of Paris);
Port Legrand, quai de Stalingrad, upstream of the Pont de Sèvres (more than 100,000 tonnes handled in 2007 because of the development work in Billancourt after the departure of the Renault factories);
from the port of Boulogne-Billancourt, quai Alphonse-Le Gallo, downstream from the Pont de Sèvres (approved for the environment and recoverable products) which houses a nautical center (all marine supplies and activities);
from the port of Pont de Saint-Cloud, quai du Quatre-Septembre, downstream from the Pont de Saint-Cloud.

There are no passenger stopovers on the Boulogne-Billancourt shore. The closest is on the Sèvres shore, between the downstream tip of Île Seguin and the Pont de Sèvres, but it is not served by the Batobus shuttle, which does not descend lower than the Eiffel Tower. However, the Studios port, Quai du Point-du-Jour, serves as a landing stage for night cruises.