History and anecdotes of this picturesque neighborhood
Once a military maneuvering range, this area was called the Plan Saint-Michel. It served as a camp for armed pilgrims, also known as Crusaders, before embarking by boat.
From the 18th century onwards, the area gradually began to develop in a bourgeois atmosphere. The area is renowned for its peaceful, pleasant lifestyle. In 1881, a 700-meter-long tunnel was dug in the subsoil for the passage of Marseille’s very first tramway.
In 1953, the very first traffic light was inaugurated by Gaston Defferre. It was also on the Plaine that Alphonse Fondère and Louis Capazza, two young aeronauts of the time, took to the skies aboard the airship Le Gabizos for the first time, bound for Corsica, on November 14, 1886. The crossing, though tumultuous, was a success. In 1930, Louis-Marcel Bottinelly commemorated their epic by creating a monument in their effigy.