The Terreaux are named after the embankments on which they were built. The place was fortified in the Middle Ages and turned into a market in the Renaissance. When it was paved in the 18th century, it gradually became the administrative and economic centre of the city, as the City Hall and Museum of Fine Arts still testify.
In 1892, a fountain designed as an allegory of the Garonne River by Auguste Bartholdi, the “father” of the Statue of Liberty, was installed in the centre of the square, having originally been carved for the city of Bordeaux. During the successive renovations of the square in 1994 and 2019, the Place des Terreaux has been completely redesigned by artist Daniel Buren. It is now adorned with 44 cubes created by Buren and 15 fountains. It also lights up at nightfall as if its floor were home to another galaxy.
In summer, thanks to the terraces that border it, Les Terreaux is one of the most popular meeting points for young people in Lyon to meet for a drink at happy hour.
Place des Terreaux