Montpellier / Comédie-Esplanade: towards a new phase of work

The lazy river, which is located in the center aisle of the Esplanade, will be replaced with a fountain placed at the height of the children. (© Ter Agency)

It’s gone again. After the first phase of work started in September at the Comédie, the second phase began from January 16th on open field. And more specifically middle aisle.

Accordingly, the Esplanade will be the subject of a large program of ongoing restoration and renaturation work three goals :

  • Renovate and modernize
  • Refresh and grow
  • Make the Esplanade a park of arts and culture

update the old

Update broken equipment that hasn’t been modernized or hasn’t been modernized at all for almost 40 years it has become a real necessity. The following facilities are affected:

  • Water network
  • Electrical equipment
  • Floor covering
  • Spacious playground
  • Flower shops and food stalls
  • All furniture
  • street lighting

Actually to adapt this equipment to current problems. While the new playground facilities will be designed for children with disabilities, public lighting will be redesigned, with attention to reducing electricity consumption and light pollution to better take into account ecological and biodiversity challenges.

L’Esplanade: green and fresh lungs

The Esplanade and Jardin du Champ de Mars form what is commonly called a green lungs. The works thus aim to strengthen this role to adapt the heart of Metropolis to climate change. The whole project will make it possible drying nearly 3,400 m2 of space today it is paved by the renaturation and creation of a vegetated strip.

A total of 37 trees will be planted. (©DR)

Tree planting is also in the program: 37 additions will be planted at the Esplanade and Jardin du Champs de Mars. Apart from being renatured, the space will be refreshed. How ? By replacing the basin located at the level of the central aisle with new water fountain designed for child height. The residents of little Montpellier will be able to have fun with this new water jet.

A connected cultural place

Modernized, denatured, refreshed, and now liberated. Indeed, a large nave will open to open the Comédie to the Esplanade and restore historical perspective.

Video: currently on Actu
The Esplanade will regain its historical perspective.
The Esplanade will regain its historical perspective. (©DR)

This job will make it possible connecting several cultural places togethernamely the Fabre Museum, the Popular Pavilion, Espace Bagouet and the Rabelais Centre.

What is the speed to work?

Subsequent phases of the work will be organized by passage so that at least one or two passages remain passable during the construction period until the delivery of the facility in 2025.
Traffic will also be maintained permanently between rue Montpelliéret and the Auguste Comte pedestrian bridge to facilitate pedestrian connections to the Joffre secondary school in particular.

The first phase of work on the Esplanade will start from January 16 until the end of 2023, the renovation of the center aisle.

Prior to earthworks, preparatory work will be carried out in 3 phases until early February:

– Initially, during the second half of January, site erection will begin with the phased installation of 800 linear meters of wooden fences. It will then become a subject change, supporting an exhibition which will showcase the renovation project of the Esplanade and its inscriptions in the historical evolution of the site.

– In the second step, at the end of January, the plant beds (perennials and shrubs) that currently occupy the center aisle flower beds will be removed and will be temporarily stored in the greenhouses of the Grammont horticulture center before being transplanted, for the most part, in Antigone to renew the landscape Place de Thessalie.

– Finally in the third step, in early February, the 3 statues currently installed in the nave will be moved and stored in Arles by a special company, which is in charge of restoration and conservation before being moved at the end of the work.

During this work on the center aisle, the terrace stalls and cafe-restaurants installed in the Paul Boulet aisle, along the Sarrail boulevard, could be kept in their usual places. On the other hand, the bookseller’s market had to be moved temporarily to Allée De Lattre de Tassigny, near the Bosc stall.

This transformation is accompanied by a cultural heritage restoration program which includes several elements, including Comedy:

  • Repairing the Comédie floor
  • Opera façade recovery
  • Bosc kiosk restoration
  • Restoration of the Esplanade and Jardin du Champs de Mars sculptures

Another construction site at the same time

Also from January 16, simultaneously with the designation of the work area on the Esplanade and following the preparatory work carried out last December with the creation of an access point at the intersection of the Frédéric Mistral avenue and the Citadel alley, it will be located in the place of the Legion of Honor all necessary facilities for site life.


This residence on the Comédie-Esplanade site will be operational until the end of development work scheduled for 2025. Due to this installation and the necessary securing of the site, certain paths and passages had to be temporarily closed behind the People’s Pavilion and the National Police station. Own
a small space can remain accessible in front of the War Memorial.

> Practical : Due to work being done as part of a beautification project for Comédie and Esplanade, events that are normally held will be moved. As an example, The Comedy of the Book – Ten days in May qwho will stand May 5-14, 2023 will reside in peyrou for his bookseller fair May 12-14.

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