Square des Peupliers

May 10, 2011By Louis FraysseSecret Paris

Poplars to Mark a Lost River

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Roses in the Square des Peupliers in Paris’s 13th arrondissement. Photo: Louis Fraysse

The Square des Peupliers is a triangle-shaped street near the Butte aux Cailles in Paris’s 13th arrondissement. Its name is a reminder that poplar trees (peupliers) once grew alongside the Bièvre, a river that flowed through the neighborhood and on into the Seine until it was covered over in the early 20th century. Sadly, it now runs into the sewers of Paris. The cobblestoned Square des Peupliers is lined with small houses, each with its own little garden. With its trees and climbing roses, it is especially beautiful in the springtime. The nearby Rue Dieulafoy, which runs over the bed of the Bièvre, is noteworthy for its row of houses built on the same pattern in the 1910s, when the emphasis was on the development of housing for workers.

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