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Gare de l’Est railway station, once called gare de Strasbourg, is in close proximity of the gare du nord railway station. This tour will help you understand why the area inherited two stations quite close to each other in the middle of the 19th century. You will discover the history of gare de l’Est railway station and the role it played on the evolution of the area.
First part of the visit: The Gare de l’Est railway station, with a first viewpoint over the railways from La Fayette bridge, inaugurated on 20th October 1928, to permit crossing over the railway tracks. Passing over on to rue d’Alsace will allow you to discover Patrick Blanc’s green wall, botanist and inventor of the Vegetable Wall. You will analyse the station façade which closes the perspective of the North-South axis that Baron Haussmann had cut through (avenue de Strasbourg) to learn about its sculptures and evolution. You will then discover the inside of the station.
Second part: the former Récollets convent, with a presentation of its history (many modifications made) and successive functions to what it has become today : Maison de l'Architecture, Ordre des Architectes d'Ile-de-France, Maison d'Accueil pour artistes étrangers (Reception centre for foreign artists). A walk through Villemin square will be the occasion to speak about the nearby canal Saint-Martin.
The tour finishes with a visit of the Saint-laurent church with a presentation of the paintings on the facade and of the slabs of enamelted lava.
In case of last minute reservation (Friday noon) please print out your receipt, that will be requested upon arrival.
The tour is given by the qualified guide Bruno Granozio, expect in Unesco and issues relating to world heritage. Discover other tours of stations and districts guided by Bruno Granozio (gare du nord railway station, Parc de Bercy (Bercy gardens), autour de la BNF (National Library...).
If you just enjoy walking around Paris all while learning about it, don't miss our walking tours.