It was inaugurated in 1852 and fell into decline in the 20th century, closing in 1993

La Petit Ceinture: an abandoned 32-kilometre circular railway in Paris

Europe's oldest capitals are ideal places for fans of exploring ruins from the era of the industrial revolution.

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During that time, in the mid-19th century, the Petit Ceinture (Little Belt) arose in Paris, a circular railway that encircled the city in order to guarantee supplies for the system of fortifications that defended the city. capital of France. The first section of this line was inaugurated in 1852, while the rest were still under construction until 1869, just in time for the Franco-Prussian War (1870-1871). The line, with a length of 32 kilometers, circulated in the open air for 60% of its route, with the rest of the route under tunnels and bridges.

The Petit Ceinture was damaged during the Assassin of Paris, but it resumed its normal activity a few months after the end of the war, in the summer of 1871, playing a notable role in the Universal Expositions of 1878 and 1900 , going into decline soon after. The circular line survived the two world wars, despite the combats recorded in the area that ran along its tracks during the Liberation of Paris in 1944. However, the decline of the line It had already begun in 1934 with its closure to passenger traffic, limiting itself to freight traffic, which continued until 1993.

Since then, the line has been abandoned, with many of its sections closed to the public, although it has become an attractive place for urban explorers. You can watch a video about this line posted today by Chris Luckhardt here:

And here you can see a report from Le Gène Urbain , in French, showing more sections of the Petit Ceinture:

You can see here some screenshots of these videos showing several tunnels and open-air tracks of this railway line, today largely invaded by vegetation.

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