Global Street Design Guide

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Table of Contents

Global Street Design Guide

Case Study: Boulevard de Magenta; Paris, France

Location: 9th and 10th arrondissements, Paris, France
Population: 2.2 million
Metro: 12.1 million
Length: 1.95 km
Right-of-Way: 30 m
Context: Mixed-Use (Commercial/Residential/Office)
Cost: 24 million EUR (27 million USD)
Funding: Municipality of Paris, Region Ile-de-France, Central Government
Max. Speed: 50 km/h


The transformation of the boulevard is part of the Espaces Civilisés, a program started in the early 2000s. The program was launched to reduce the high traffic that dominated many of the wider boulevards and avenues of Paris.

The Boulevard de Magenta was one of the first to be transformed following the introduction of the civic space guidelines.

Nicknamed by local residents the Magenta Expressway, it had endured traffic volumes of up to 1,400 vehicles per hour in each direction, frequent speeding, and many fatalities at intersections. Noise and pollution levels were among the highest in the city.

Under the program, €24 million were invested in widening sidewalks, planting trees, and building protected cycle tracks. Granite dividers were installed to protect a new dedicated bus lane.

To accommodate deliveries, 30-minute truck parking spaces were located on the curbside of the dedicated bus lane.

No curbside parking was provided along the boulevard. Intersections were made safer with secured crosswalks, widened pedestrian refuge islands, and extended crossing phases.

New pavement, landscaping, and street furniture were added to sidewalks and plazas. Businesses signed charters of quality to establish uniform signage and public stewardship practices.




  • Reduce traffic fatalities, congestion, and pollution.
  • Create a more attractive and pedestrian-oriented environment.
  • Create a space that supports businesses.


Municipality of Paris, Region Ile-de-France, Central Government, citizen associations, and business owners.

Key Elements

Sidewalk widened (from 4 m to 8 m) and lane narrowed.

Crossing distance shortened from 20 m to 12.8 m

Separated cycle track

Dedicated bus-only lane

New trees planted along the sidewalk extension


Project Timeline

Adapted by Global Street Design Guide published by Island Press.