Paris Transportation

Urban structure

The main features of medieval differentiation have been preserved to this day. The decision-making center of the economy, which is also a representative and tourist district, is located in the 1st, 2nd and 9th arrondissement. Most of the headquarters of major companies, transport and energy companies, banks and insurance companies, the stock exchange and import-export companies are located here. This Center d’Affaires is the city’s main commuter area.

In the field of fashion, court life of the feudal period and the wealthy bourgeoisie left Paris a great tradition. The most famous jewelers, fashion designers, milliners, hairdressers and perfumeries have recently settled almost exclusively in the west of the city. This development began when today’s Élysée Palace and subsequently many other noble palaces in the area of ​​Rue Saint-Honoré and Rue du Faubourg-Saint-Honoré were built.

On the Champs-Élysées, which run from Place de la Concorde to Place Charles de Gaulle (formerly Place de l’Étoile), shops (clothing companies, perfumeries and cafes, car showrooms, film and export agencies) have been concentrated since the beginning of the 20th century ), in the Latin Quarter and the streets around Saint-Germain-des-Prés publishers and bookshops. Quarter of a very specific type are Montmartre and Montparnasse, which were popular artists’ quarters until the late 1930s, before bohemian life shifted to other areas of the city.

Today, Montmartre has the largest concentration of entertainment venues in Paris. In the Marais (in the 3rd and 4th arrondissement) the earliest aristocratic palaces were built (after the swamps had been drained) at the end of the 14th century; After the nobility moved out, this quarter became a craftsmen’s district in the 18th century. For almost eight centuries, the Parisian population was supplied with food from the place where Philip II Augustus was located The first covered market hall was built in 1183, around which the extensive quarter of the »Halles« emerged. Constant population growth and changing consumer habits made it impossible for the “belly of Paris” to remain in the city center (demolished in 1969). A new location was found south of the city at Rungis in the immediate vicinity of Orly Airport; one of the largest European distribution centers for fresh market products developed there.

A first spatial plan for the Paris region was presented in 1936, but the Second World War prevented its implementation. Since the 1950s, the planners’ efforts have been aimed at slowing down the concentration process (decentralization policy), but it was not until 1965 that a new spatial plan for the greater Paris area came into force. The main aim of the plan was to achieve functional unbundling and relief within the greater area. A key planning goal was the creation of a total of five “Villes nouvelles” (New Towns) in the outer ring of the agglomeration: Marne-la-Vallée, Cergy-Pontoise, Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, Évry and Sénart. In 2015, a total of 908,300 residents lived here. The principle of the New Cities is the creation of living, working and supply areas in spatial proximity, but in a clearly separated arrangement. Another essential idea of ​​the spatial planning plan is the preservation of recreational areas, “Zones naturelles d’équilibre” (natural compensation zones), in the greater Paris area, these include the large forest areas in the interior of the Paris basin. There is a separate foundation for urban development measures, the IAU (Institut d’Aménagement et d’Urbanisme). A thorough decentralization has not yet been achieved. Aménagement et d’Urbanisme). A thorough decentralization has not yet been achieved. Aménagement et d’Urbanisme). A thorough decentralization has not yet been achieved.


According to programingplease, Paris is the main hub of the French rail network (six international stations). The most important inner-city means of transport since 1900 has been the subway (Métropolitain, Métro for short); it has a network of over 200 km, to which a rapid transit system to the suburbs (»Banlieue«) is connected (RER; Réseau Exprès Régional). In 1992 an approximately 17 km long tram line went into operation in the suburbs, expanded to 10 lines with 110 km by 2017.

A 36 km long ring road (Boulevard Périphérique, completed in 1973) is one of the city’s most important arteries. The port facilities in the Paris area on the Seine, Marne and Oise (major ports of Gennevilliers and Bonneuil-sur-Marne as well as 200 small ports) form the Autonomous Port of Paris (since 1970) and the second largest inland port in Europe. With the Charles-de-Gaulle airport near Roissy-en-France, Paris received its third international airport in 1974; the other two are Orly and Le Bourget. About 80 km north of Paris is the Paris-Beauvais-Tillé international airport, which is mainly used by low-cost airlines.

Paris Transportation