Geneva – Plainpalais

What a wonderful life

At the very heart of the city, this huge neighbourhood has very diverse activities and populations. The recent refurbishment of the Plaine, the many transformations, for instance around the television building or the Mamco, have allowed the former industrial neighbourhood of Plainpalais to finally shed this skin. Its green lung is the Plaine, a huge 10 hectare diamond without any buildings at all. Bordered by trees and building façades, the Plaine hosts various markets, parties, funfairs, circuses and other temporary events. At the Eastern end, its Rond-Point roundabout is an important crossroads for public transportation, and the shopping streets on the North and West of the Plaine give onto lively streets full of cafés and bars that have opened for the university, cultural and journalistic population. This is where the Quartier des Bains is developing with its galleries, museums and contemporary art centres. At night, the Plaine de Plainpalais is transformed into an urban, artistic bay thanks to the dozen or so light installations on the roofs, the fruit of the Neon Parallax project. It forms a counterpoint to the commercially sponsored lake bay of Geneva. Preferably, a walk to do at dusk.