chapter  6
The Restructuring of Declining Suburbs in the Paris Region
Pages 21

In industrialized countries, the inner-ring suburbs of large cities have changed dramatically in recent times. These territories, defi ned as “legally separate communities immediately adjacent to and contiguous with the central city of a metropolitan area” (Downs, 1997, p. 359; Lee and Leigh 2005, p. 340), developed around metropolises during their fi rst phase of expansion outside the city limits (Lee and Leigh 2005). In Europe, particularly in Paris, the focus of this chapter, the suburbs developed in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries as a consequence of rapid, massive industrialization. In response to the lack of space within the central city, industrial activities developed on the periphery, which was increasingly well served by rail and where land was plentiful and cheap. As factoriesparticularly the most heavily polluting and land-intensive-sprang up in the suburbs, a burgeoning working-class population moved there, mostly from the central city (Faure 1986; Magri and Topalov 1989). These movements shaped the typical industrial, working-class suburb epitomized by the ceinture rouge (“Red Belt”) of Paris.