Players in the New Market

In early medieval times all the produce was brought into the City on boats and unloaded and marketed at what is now the square in front of the Hotel de Ville. But in 1108, Louis VI had the market transferred to a spot which was then somewhat outside the City, now the Les Halles district. At first this was an open marketplace with an atmosphere more like a fair than a produce market, but as the City grew, the dealers in merchandise other than basic provisions were gradually forced out of the enclosed market. From 1854 to 1866 at the order of Napoleon III twelve huge double halls were constructed to shelter the market.

By 1962-69 the congestion and outdated design of the market caused its transfer to Rungis, 15km to the south of Paris and the huge halls were destroyed. For ten years the hole in the city's fabric remained open. In 1979 the Forum of the Markets was finally built which continues the commercial tradition of the area.

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