|The La Défense business district is located in the Greater Paris metropolis. More precisly, it is located in the northwestern sububs of Paris in the Hauts-de-Seine department. It is the largest in Europe in terms of office space and the second largest in Europe in terms of financial activity. In 2017, it was rank the fouth most attractive business district in the world.
The name of this district comes from the statue called La Défense de Paris, erected to the glory of the soldiers who defend the city of Courbevoie (a city close to this district ) during the Franco-Prussian war in 1870. This bronze sculpture by Louis-Ernest Barrias was inaugurated in 1883. It has been moved several times and in 2017 was installed on the square to be more visible.
The district of La Défense begun to develop in 1956 with the construction of the CNIT (Centre National des Industries et Techniques ) where some trade fairs and exhibitions were held. Today, it is a shopping centre and a hotel. This inovative and futuristic building in the shape of a triangular vaut, all in concrete, marks the beginning of the architectural style of the district.
In September 1958, the State created the “Etablissement Public pour l ' Aménagement de la Défense” (EPAD ) with the mission of developing the La Défense site. This is how the district gradualy took shape and came to life. Since 1960, La Défense has been mainly made up of high-rise buildings, mainly for offices. However, La Défense is a mixed district since it house 600000, sq m of dwellings.
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