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Les réservoirs de Paris

Posted By Franck On 30/04/2006 @ 23:41 In Paris Surprise,Paris Visite - Détails | 13 Comments

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Imagine calcareous stone cathedrals amids an immense pool of pure glistening water – underground …
The tank of Montsouris is a hidden treasure in the south of Paris.
In this unique and vast space, where the colors white-cream and breathtaking turquoise prevail, silence is troubled by the cristalline ripple of streaming water alone.
The original entrance to this tank is, unfortunately, now prohibited to the public.

The tank of Montsouris
The tank of Montsouris

Although, it is still kept by a few trout – who formerly attested to the water’s purity – but today, symbolically, maintain the water’s name in the age of modern technology.
With a length of 265 meters, and width of 136 meters, the surface area reaches some three hectares, and hold 202 000 m3 of water.
It was constructed in 1874, by Eugène Belgrand, an engineer of the baron Haussman. It was, at this time, the biggest tank in the world. It still supplies 1/5 of the Parisian population.

150 km from Paris, the rivers Vanne, Loing and Lumain join, and need two days to traverse the slight slope (a few cm by kilometer), and cross the divers acqueducs, like the Arcueil, which dates from the Roman Empire (although it was restaured in the XIX th century, for the construction of the tank of Montsouris).

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Arcueil Acqueduc – by night

At the end of this long voyage, a small brick house welcomes the waters, and two greedy mouths absorb it, finally feeding the famished belly of the underground cathedral.
Above the tank, five hectares of grass protect the water from pollutants, and keep it at a constant temperature of 13 ° C.

The tank of Montsouris supplies part of the south and the center of Paris.
This water has the reputation of having a better taste than the other sources which supply the capital, like theAvre, the Dhuys, this from the Marne and the Seine.

An other tresor is asleep under the Parisian ground: the Albien sheet. At 700 metres under the earth, 700 billion mಠof water has been waiting for 40 000 years. It is pure as the purest waters, and contains a great quantity of rock salt (great for the rheumatisms). It is a real treasure in the case of a major pollution. You can already access to this water at the Fontaine Lamartine in the XVI th district of Paris.


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