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Promenade Plantee in Paris the Mythical Garden That Set a Trend


Before New York's High Line Park, Parisians had already transformed old industrial train tracks into beautiful, dreamy parks.

New York City reclaimed part of its industrial infrastructure in the making of the High Line Park, the famous elevated garden built atop the abandoned train tracks in the Meatpacking District. And even if this tendency for recycling spaces has spread around the world, it is little known that it was inspired by another, previous park: the Promenade Plantée in Paris, located in the Vincennes zone. This last was built in 1986 and stretches out for 3 miles from the Opera Bastille and into the French capital.

The Vincennes train tracks were in use from 1859 to 1969, when they were abandoned after the RER long train was created. The Promenade Plantée contains endless track paths where pedestrians can walk between flowerbeds and bamboo forests. And like long rectangular mirrors, its ponds sit still while sliced by petit metallic bridges.

The park gets thousands of daily visitors who come to eat, walk or run in the lush greenery, or who are just looking for an elevated view of the “City of Light”. The place has become a quintessential part of Parisian architecture and has inaugurated the beautiful trend of replacing abandonment with greenery. Industrial spaces have finally found a way to exist alongside nature.

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