- From "Porte de Paris" to Saint-Denis train station, go to meet the industrial heritage of the area: workshops Christofle, the former pharmacy and its protected fireplace, the role of rail and river transport in the industrial development the city from the nineteenth century.
- Difference in height
- 11.93 m
- Points of interest
1 The Plaine industrialisation
It was also a very good hunting ground which regularly attracted royal hunts.
The recent evolution of industrial machinery encouraged many craftsmen settled in Paris to seek new locations on larger and cheaper land.
Plain had an advantage: easily exploitable groundwater table that allowed to feed the steam. The authorities also encouraged their settlement in this area, where the prevailing winds from the west swept fumes from factories, taking away from the capital.
2 Gaz factory
3 Saint-Denis canal and its locks
4 Former pharmaceutical factory
In 1867, after Menier left, the "Pharmacie Centrale de France" moved in. In 1900, it is considered the largest and most important chemical factory in France. It ceased operations in 1981. Today, there are only the building management, caretaker's bungalow, workshop and fireplace, all registered as historical monuments. The fireplace is a remarkably aesthetic example of industrial architecture: it shows the polychrome designs. At the top we can distinguish a M initial Menier.
5 Saint-Denis canal waterway
During the nineteenth century, the waterway is of great importance, the railroad is not yet established. This is the only way to transport heavy loads. The channel has played a key role in the industrialization of the Plain.
6 Christofle factory
The Saint-Denis has a privileged location in 1876, the ground is connected to the railway and the company has a right of enjoyment of the canal bank. Thus, it can receive the nickel by water, but also send their orders to its customers through the canal and the railway.
Thanks to its innovative techniques (refined nickel by chemical means), the company is leading the industry and is able to sell its products twice cheaper than the market.
In 1885, Christofle hosts small and large silverware on Saint-Denis with the space he has (21,000 m²) and employs 500 workers. Stopping the "nickel" activity in the 1930s pushed the son of Christofle, Tony Bouilhet, to centralize its activities on Saint-Denis site and its 1500 workers.
After his factory museum which outlined Christofle collections, company history and techniques related to jewelry, the company has now left Saint-Denis and the museum has been closed since 2008. The buildings are listed as historical monuments since 2007 and are in the redevelopment project. This is one of the few industrial sites in the area to have kept its original appearance.
Like its industry, Christofle has managed to build a site with impressive architecture, cheaply.
7 Former drying place
8 The manufacture
Today, this building has been converted into a place to house services activities and offices. The main focus of the project was to preserve and enhance the existing buiding and the gable brick street steelwork.
Traffic reached 2.3 million tons a year before the first World War. In the second half of the twentieth century, skippers ailing to rail.
But the Saint-Denis canal retains an important activity because of its established companies along its banks . Today it retains its industrial aspect, but its banks have been renovated for promenade and tourist activities (cruises).
10 The CFI , Chemin de fer indistrial (industrial railroad)
It allowed all plants who wished to be connected to the railroad tracks going north but also be interconnected.
The company is also developing a port on the Saint-Denis canal where barges are unloaded and goods carried by rail to the factories. Traffic growing rapidly: it increased from 25 000 tonnes in 1884 to 210 000 tonnes in 1890 and 340,000 in 1900.
- 12 meters of difference in height
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