The Francois Mitterrand Strip is a major historic site for the city of Rennes. Constructed in 1682, it came to being at the foot of ramparts and dominated the swampy confluence of the Ille and Vilaine Rivers. First flanked by canals and four rows of trees, it went from a place for strolling and being seen, to a more functional location absorbed by the city’s grid of roads. Over time, construction projects replaced the canals and the original horizon literally disappeared with the growth of the city. Following the advent of cars, the strip became a vast car park in the 1970’s, for which the ground and the underground levels showed evidence of opportunistic construction work serving typical, evolving urban needs.