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Quimper

 

Quimper is a French commune in the Brittany region located in the north-west of France. The city is the capital of the department of Finistère, the seat of the departmental council, as well as of the two cantons that compose it. It is also the traditional capital of Cornouaille, Pays Glazik and Pays de Cornouaille which had 331,300 inhabitants in 2009, the seat of the intermunicipal association of Quimper Bretagne Occidentale which had 100,187 inhabitants in 2014, the seat of the district of Quimper and finally the seat of the diocese of Quimper and Léon. Its inhabitants are called the Quimpérois.

Formerly very small, its municipal territory was greatly enlarged from January 1, 1960 by the annexation of the three neighboring municipalities of Kerfeunteun (3,216 hectares), Ergué-Armel (3,356 ha) and Penhars (1,502 ha). The commune of Quimper, before 1960, covered 192 hectares, which made it the smallest capital of the French department. With 63,513 inhabitants in 2014, it is the 80th municipality in France, the 3rd in the Brittany region (after Rennes and Brest) and the 2nd in Finistère in terms of population. Its urban unit was 79,804 inhabitants in 2014 and its urban area was 126,730 inhabitants in 2014, i.e. the 2nd urban area after that of Brest. The city is crossed by four rivers: the Odet and its three main tributaries, the Steïr, the Frout and the Jet.

The city is classified city of art and history, it also obtained two other rewards, that of obtaining four flowers in the contest of the cities and villages.

According to studies, Quimper ranked 2nd among French cities where life was good in 2017, 13th least poor town in France in 2012 and 1st agglomeration between 70,000 and 100,000 inhabitants where it is good to do business in 2016.

 

Geology

The territory of Quimper belongs to one of the great geological units of the Breton peninsula, the South Armorican domain. A Paleozoic sedimentary cover formed on a Brioverian base. The whole, base and cover, is folded during the Variscan orogeny (also known as Hercynian) (between 350 and 290 Ma). The continental collision during this orogeny results in a general low-medium pressure metamorphism, forming mica schists north of Quimper. At Stéphanien, the summit part of the Carboniferous, small lake basins of collapse with detrital filling and coal levels are formed (Quimper coal basin, Baie des Trépassés, Saint-Pierre-la-Cour). The formation of the Hercynian range is also reflected in the South Armorican Shear, a large crustal accident (a detachment whose horizontal discharge would reach 500 km and which would affect the entire thickness of the continental crust, i.e. 30 to 35 km) forming a corridor of faults Hercynian (series of faults running from the Pointe du Raz to the Loire), partly relic of the suture of the South Armorican Ocean. Finally, it results in the establishment of numerous crustal leucogranites in a lobe along this axis starting from the Pointe du Raz and going as far as Lizio near the Landes de Lanvaux. These granitic intrusions, concomitantly with this recess, suggest that the latter favored the generation of deep magmas and granitization. The placement of the Pluguffan leucogranite, which also envelops the Plomelin leucogranodiorite and the anatectic Quimper granodiorite (the passage to these two entities being very gradual and continuous) is thus linked to this Hercynian tectonics. The Quimper granodiorite forms a massif 1 to 3 km wide and about 15 km, from west to east. It encompasses rare small enclaves of migmatitized mica schists and orthogneisses, the largest of which (kilometers) are individualized on both sides of the south-eastern bypass of Quimper. Its paragenesis includes a scarce quartz (25 to 35%) in medium ranges sometimes stretched in the foliation plane; a richness in albite-oligoclase (40 to 50%) in medium ranges often subautomorphic, with subordinate microline (10 to 20%). Biotite (8 to 12%) is abundant and arranged in small oriented flakes, associated with those of muscovite (2 to 3%).

The site is difficult, as it is established in narrow valleys encased in the carboniferous Stéphanian and topped by rather steep slopes of granulite and micaceous schists. The flat and wide spaces are only found at the confluence of small rivers brought to rapid overflows during prolonged rains. The city center and the district of the railway station are particularly exposed. A large part of the city of Quimper is built on the Carboniferous coalfields (Quimper coal basin of 4 × 1 km, controlled by NW-SE faults which have pinched a few pieces of Stéphanien) from detrital sediments (pudding, sandstone , carbonaceous shale rich in plant remains). Research work by boring galleries was carried out from 1744 in Quimper and 1752 in Ergué-Gabéric, as well as between 1833 and 1844 for the Kergogne mine (Kergogne basin located in the northern part of the Quimper graben). Despite these several attempts to extract coal, no tonnage has ever been extracted from this basin.

These charcoal schists constitute a veritable open-air geological museum, witness to the exceptional biodiversity in the Carboniferous. Indeed at this time, Gondwana collided with Laurussia (approximately North America, Europe limited to approximately the current level of the Urals) then with Siberia, at the origin of the Hercynian chain. and Pangea. This supercontinent then forms a vast continental domain distributed on both sides of the equator. It enjoys a hot and humid tropical climate and sees the development of the largest equatorial forest that our planet has known. In the coastal lakes and swamps, covered by lush vegetation (tree ferns, horsetails, sphagnum mosses, gymnosperms - ancestors of our firs - and a botanical group that has now disappeared, that of the lycophytes), these plants have decomposed. They thus contributed to the formation of layers of rocks rich in plant debris and carbonaceous matter, in particular those of the Châteaulin basin, but also the carbonaceous rocks of the coal type of the coal basins (basins of the Baie des Trépassés, Quimper and Kergogne). Around this time, in lagoons, the hydrocarbons that we are looking for in the Iroise Sea and the English Channel are also formed.

 

The Ty Gardien antimony mine, at a place called Le Moulin, was operated between 1970 and 1975, then from 1981 to 1983, ensuring a total production of 565 tonnes of antimony. There is stibnite.

Old aurières, recognizable by the existence of very elongated pits, several hundred meters long, exist at Menez-Guen and Toulgoat, as well as at Kerniou en Plonéis.

A deep and asymmetrical site
One can detect an astonishing migration of the principal places of residence, undoubtedly due to geographical constraints (variations of the sea level) or economic (tracks on the ridges). Another peculiarity is the unusual asymmetry of the main valley: a sloping convex north bank and a concave south bank showing a height of 60 meters with steep sides.

This fact and the line of curves and counter-curves of the small Odet river is due to collapses and upheavals creating several faults in the Tertiary era to which was added a north-south shift.

 

Transportation

Road access and communication routes
Located in the far west of Brittany, Quimper is crossed by the expressway which connects Nantes to Brest (RN165 - E60). Quimper has 4 ring roads to bypass the city. Quimper is made up of 683 streets, 264 alleys, 228 paths, 74 dead ends, 46 roundabouts, 33 avenues, 38 roads and 16 boulevards. In addition, Quimper was the test town for the construction and testing of roundabouts in France in 1976 thanks to the intervention of Marc Bécam then deputy of Finistère and mayor of Quimper. Traffic experienced an unprecedented improvement in its fluidity thanks to the elimination of traffic lights at crossroads, hence the rapid expansion of the system to the whole of France. Across the city, 6,300 parking spaces are available.

Bus
The Qub network is the public transport network by bus, coach, taxi and specialized vehicles of the Quimper Bretagne Occidentale agglomeration community. It is operated by Keolis Quimper. It is made up of 19 regular bus lines, including 11 urban lines and 8 suburban lines that serve the 14 towns of the Quimper Western Brittany agglomeration: Briec-de-l'Odet, Edern, Ergué-Gabéric, Guengat, Landrévarzec, Landudal , Langolen, Locronan, Plogonnec, Plomelin, Plonéis, Pluguffan, Quéménéven and Quimper.

Lines A and B, labeled illiQo, are defined as major and benefit from a passage frequency of 12 minutes. The 11 urban lines are accessible to disabled people. All the urban and suburban lines (except the 17) run from Monday to Saturday, and two lines on Sunday. Certain passages of suburban lines and the transport of disabled people are made on prior request the day before the trip.

The network also includes 33 Presto lines, doubling some of the ordinary lines and adapted to school timetables for serving colleges and high schools, but open to all.

It shares a certain number of stopping points with the BreizhGo network which is the emanation of the organizing authority for mobility, the Brittany Region.

The fleet is made up of 53 French-made buses, 46 of which run on natural gas. In 2015, the QUB network recorded 5,300,000 trips (+ 2% compared to 2012), or nearly 20,000 daily, including more than 19,000 on urban lines alone. More than 90,000 inhabitants are served in the 8 municipalities of the agglomeration, representing a territory of nearly 282 km2. In 2012, nearly 12,000 subscribers were identified.

Since December 2012, the KorriGo card has been deployed on the Qub network. This Breton travel card allows you to travel with both the TER Bretagne and the urban networks of Brest, Lorient, Rennes, Saint-Brieuc, Saint-Malo and the BreizhGo (ex-Illenoo) bus network in Ille-et-Vilaine .

Rail transport
The town of Quimper is crossed from east to west and bordered to the north-west by the line from Savenay to Landerneau. It has an SNCF station there, the Quimper station, which was put into service when the line arrived from Lorient in 1863. Ranked 3rd station in Brittany in terms of attendance, the station now allows connections by TER or by Intercités to Brest, Châteaulin, Rennes, Lorient, Auray, Vannes, Redon and Nantes. The TGV Atlantique connects Quimper to Paris-Montparnasse station 10 times every day in more than 4 hours 30 minutes, via Rennes.

As part of the Brittany-Pays de la Loire high-speed line, the Le Mans and Rennes stations have been linked since July 2017 by a high-speed line. Combined with the modernization work of the tracks carried out between the Rennes stations and those of Quimper and Brest, the city is now 3 hours 30 minutes from Paris, more than an hour less than before.

On the other hand, in June 2013, the “Mobility 21 Commission” ruled that a high-speed line between Rennes and Quimper was not a priority, which postpones its completion between 2030 and 2050. Journeys between Brest and Rennes and all other western towns connected by this station will therefore also be faster, and it is estimated that 2 million additional travelers coming by train. The frequentation of the station is estimated at 1.6 million passengers per year in 2020.

Air transport
Quimper Cornouaille Airport is an airport located in the town of Pluguffan, 5.5 km south-west of Quimper. Note that the airport has lost 43% of its passenger traffic in 18 years to the benefit of Brest-Bretagne airport (+ 52% of passengers compared to 1998).

 

Maritime transport
Five minutes from Quimper is the small port of Quimper-Corniguel which has 300 meters of quay and a 54-meter-long pontoon on the banks of the Odet. In less than 1 hour 30 minutes it can reach the towns of Bénodet and Sainte-Marine. The port is located just ten minutes from Quimper train station and fifteen minutes from Quimper-Bretagne airport.

Bike
Quimper Bretagne Occidentale has 81 km of cycle paths and 600 bicycle parking spaces. By 2014, 250 km of cycle paths and 2,000 bicycle parking spaces will be available.

On September 17, 2011, the city and the Qub group launched VéloQub, a flexible formula for long-term bicycle rental, by the month or by the year. Two offers are available: the classic bike and the electric bike. The service is aimed at all those who wish to discover or rediscover the bicycle as a mode of urban transport.