Between 2011 and 2013, the square was fully redeveloped. It is now a pleasant, green and open space, welcoming pedestrians, terraces and shops. The appearance of its magnificent fountain, which was restored at the same time, was also enhanced.
A little bit of history…
Place des Jacobins lies on a former Jacobin convent, which was destroyed in 1808. It is named after the Jacobin monks, or the friar preachers of the Dominican Order, who resided in the building.
The building later housed the Prefecture of the Rhône, under the reign of Louis-Philippe. The fifteenth-century church was demolished in 1808.
The square was opened in 1557 on the land of the monks, on the site where the cemetery was located, the walls of which were taken down to allow access to the public. Until 1782, the square was known as ‘Place Confort’, and then became ‘Place des Jacobins’. In 1794, it was renamed ‘Place de la Fraternité’. After becoming ‘Place de la Préfecture’, and then ‘Place de l'Impératrice’, it returned to the name ‘Place des Jacobins’ in February 1871.
The white marble fountain standing in the middle of the square was sculpted in 1885 by Gaspard André. It represents four famous local artists: architect Philibert Delorme, sculptor Guillaume Coustou, engraver and illustrator Gérard Audran and painter Hippolyte Flandrin.
The square conversion project was entrusted to a group formed of Atelier Jacqueline Osty (landscape design), Lionel Orsi, architect of the design office Girus (roads and utilities, project management and coordination), Cyclades (transport) and Atelier Roland Jéol (lighting design).
The renovation of the fountain was performed by Mr Jouve, heritage architect, and Mr Devantoy, of the firm Diluvial (fountain engineering).