Place de le République in Paris has been closed for nearly two years for total renovation. It used to be a giant rectangle with cars swirling around it and through the middle. The street in the middle has now been removed and the street on the northern side is gone, too, although municipal buses have a lane to get through.
Yesterday, the square was reopened to the public, and Parisians had clearly been missing it sorely, because they were most definitely out en masse.
Water features were added, and children had adopted them instantly.
Painful accidents will certainly happen, but I approve of allowing kids to test their limits.
Everyone was in love with this Asian baby. More on him later.
Here is some action!
Since it was the inaugural day, there were street performances and activities.
I'll return for a few more pictures when things have calmed down a bit. In any case, République will always be a hub of Parisian activity since in the past, most major protest marches began here. It just wasn't the same these past two years when the marches and démonstrations happened elsewhere.
And of course it is also the place where the greatest number of metro lines intersect.
Great to see the end result Kerouac. We had dinner at Leon de Bruxelles one night and the construction made walking around very awkward. I think they have done a marvelous job. Your photos are lovely and the happy atmosphere with the children having a wonderful time is almost tangible!
Place de la République is the intersection of 3 arrondissements -- the 3rd, 10th and 11th -- so I suppose that each arrondissement can claim it for certain purposes. The 3rd arrondissement has an annual rock festival, so they moved it to République this year. I was out of town for some of the acts I would have most liked to see -- Biffy Clyro, Jake Bugg or the Naive New Beaters among others, but I did catch a little bit of the Algerian rock star Rachid Taha on the final night.
The cafe there is good, although a bit on the pricey side. They've also been using the Place for various events. I was there on a less crowded Sunday morning in July, and the fountains had plenty of children (and a number of adults) playing in them.