On a mission to bridge the gap between the City of Love and its less-loved suburbs, BETC Paris' Magasins Généraux has created the first signage system for Greater Paris.
Named "Par ici le Grand Paris", the system aims to encourage locals and tourists alike to experience Greater Paris’ hidden hotspots, comprising 1,200 cultural venues, 300 concert halls, 200 festivals and 300 museums. Magasins Généraux, BETC Paris' cultural centre, created the project in collaboration with news group Enlarge Your Paris.
A collection of 43 black-and-gold signposts have been erected across the city at famous landmarks. The signs note the journey time to each destination by public transport, as well as the nearest metro station, with slogans such as "Van Gogh's landscapes, in real life".
They will be on display until 5 October, with information for all destinations also available via an interactive map on paricilegrandparis.fr.
"Par ici le Grand Paris" was among the 12 winners of Faire Paris, an accelerator of architectural and urban projects initiated by the Pavillon de l'Arsenal and the city of Paris with support from financial organisation Caisse des Dépôts and automotive brand Mini.
"Greater Paris is the name we give today to the Paris of tomorrow," the Magasins Généraux and Enlarge Your Paris teams said. "It is through this name that Paris really takes on the dimension of a global metropolis, but today Greater Paris remains a distant and vague notion for the majority of Parisians and Franciliens. How do we construct the mental map of this territory that we still have trouble understanding? The 'Par ici le Grand Paris' signage is a first step for us to meet this challenge."
This marks the second collaboration between Enlarge Your Paris and Magasins Généraux since BETC Paris moved its office to a north-eastern Parisian suburb in 2016. Last year, they published a cultural guidebook for Greater Paris entitled Le Guide des Grands Parisiens.