Essential Architecture-  Paris

Gare de l’Est

architect

François Duquesney

location

Paris, France. (in the Xe arrondissement, not far from the Gare du Nord, facing the boulevard de Strasbourg)

date

1849

style

Romanesque Revival main body, Neo-Renaissance wings

construction

stone facade, steel and glass train shed

type

Utility Transport Railway station
 
  Front of the Gare de l'Est (2007)
 
  Detail of the main entrance
 
  View of the entrance foyer
 
  Hall leading to the Métro station
 
  Main arrival and departure hall
 
  TGV trains waiting
The Gare de l'Est ("East station" in English) is one of the six large SNCF termini in Paris. It is in the Xe arrondissement, not far from the Gare du Nord, facing the boulevard de Strasbourg, part of the north-south axis of Paris created by Baron Haussmann. It is one of the largest and the oldest railway stations in Paris.

History

The Gare de l'Est was opened in 1849 by the Compagnie du Chemin de Fer de Paris à Strasbourg (the Paris-Strasbourg Railway Company) under the name "Strasbourg platform." This platform corresponds today with the hall for main-line trains, and was designed by the architect François Duquesney. It was renamed the "Gare de l'Est" in 1854, after the expansion of service to Mulhouse.

Renovations to the station followed in 1885 and 1900. In 1931 it was doubled in size, with the new part of the station built symmetrically with the old part. This transformation changed the surrounding neighborhood significantly.

At the top of the west façade of the Gare de l'Est is a statue by the sculptor Philippe-Joseph-Henri Lemaire, representing the city of Strasbourg, while the east end of the station is crowned by a statue personifying Verdun, by Varenne. These two cities are important destinations serviced by Gare de l'Est.

On 4 October 1883, the Gare de l'Est saw the first departure of the Orient Express for Istanbul.

The Gare de l'Est is the terminus of a strategic railway network extending towards the eastern part of France, and it saw large mobilizations of French troops, most notably in 1914, at the beginning of the World War I. In the main-line train hall, a monumental painting by Alfred Herter, dating from 1926, illustrates the departure of these soldiers for the Western front.

SNCF has started service on LGV Est Europeen from Gare de l'Est on 10 June 2007, with TGV and ICE service to north-eastern France, southern Germany and Switzerland. Trains are initially planned to run at 320 km/h (198 mph), with the potential to run at 350 km/h (217 mph), cutting travel times by up to 2 hours.

Transport
SNCF:
International service to Luxembourg, Germany and Central Europe via the Orient Express.
Mainline trains servicing the eastern regions of France of Champagne-Ardenne, Lorraine, Alsace.
TER service to Champagne-Ardenne.
Métro:
Lines 4 (Porte de Clignancourt--Porte d'Orléans) and 5 (Place d'Italie--Bobigny-Pablo Picasso): service to the Gare du Nord.
Line 7 (La Courneuve-8 Mai 1945--Mairie d'Ivry/Villejuif-Louis Aragon)

links

See also
Gare de l’Est
Gare du Nord
Gare d'Austerlitz
Gare de Lyon
Gare Montparnasse
Gare Saint-Lazare
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