The vast Porte Maillot is located in the center of the roundabout between the boulevards of Pershing, Gouvienne-Saint-Cyr, Admiral Bruhat, Pereira and avenues Neuilly and Grand-Armé on the border of the 16th and 17th districts of Paris.
Port-Maillot Square is an oval, elongated along an axis connecting the Arc de Triomphe of the 19th century. on the Champs Elysees with a giant arch in the Défense district. Its territory covers an area of 16,1 thousand hectares. m2, most of which is occupied by the Alexander Solzhenitsyn Park located in the center.
The origin of the name of the square is associated with the defensive fortifications built in the 1840s by the government of Thiers. Around this place was the Port Mayo Gate, which gave the square its modern name.
Traditions of entertainment
Since 1890, near the square on its northern side, there was an airfield of Port Mayo. At the beginning of the 20th century in its hangars and the field, the aeronautic fleet of France was based. In 1904, an unpleasant incident occurred here. A squally gust of wind broke the cable and lifted a balloon with nine passengers to a height of 4 thousand meters.
Around Porte Maillot Square with the onset of the 20th century. concert halls and entertainment centers began to open one after another. The first of these was the concert hall built before the World Exhibition of 1900, which could accommodate 6 spectators.
In 1905, the ballroom le Printania was opened near the square, which was also used for temporary exhibitions. After 4 years, the Parisian Luna Park was created on its basis, the rides and shows of which delighted the Parisians for almost half a century.
There was a very unusual sports and entertainment facility next to it. It held rat races and fights, but its main purpose was to teach terriers to hunt burrowing animals. In the 1970s, after the reconstruction of the transport system in the area of Port Mayo, the Palace of Congresses was built instead of it, the airfield and the Luna Park.
Places of memory in the bosom of nature
The garden in the center of Port Mayo Square was created back in 1974 during the construction of the ring road. The name of the Russian writer and dissident A. Solzhenitsyn was given to him in 2012.
Lavender blooming here and rose bushes add the desired freshness to the air in the center of the traffic junction. The planted linden trees and shrubs create shady corners on the square and protect from city noise. An unexpected and pleasant surprise for visitors to the park can be a meeting with rabbits, a colony of which has settled in the shade of its trees.
On the south side, the square adjoins the largest park in the 16th district, named after politicians and brothers Alexander and Rene Parodi. Underpasses under city highways unite two green zones into one.
On an area of 23,7 thousand m2, a large number of various types of trees are planted, and its central entrance is decorated with multicolored mosaics. There are several playgrounds and monuments here.
The first of them was installed in 1907 in memory of the engineer and car designer Emil Levasseur. On the relief on a stone stele, architect Aimé Daloux depicted the final scene of the Paris-Bordeaux-Paris motor rally. The second monument was created according to the models of the sculptor Alberto Fero in 1951 in honor of Charles de Gaulle's ally General Pierre Koenig, who fought in Libya, Tunisia, Eritrea and liberated France.
Address: Place de la Porte-Maillot, Paris 75017
Metro: Neuilly porte maillot
RER Train: Neuilly porte maillot
Bus: Neuilly Porte Maillot, Porte Maillot