Clermont-Ferrand

France

Clermont-Ferrand is a city and commune of France, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region. The city known for the chain of volcanoes, the Chaîne des Puys surrounding it, including the dormant volcano Puy de Dôme (10 kilometres (6 miles), one of the highest, topped by communications towers, and visible from the city.

CountryFrance
RegionAuvergne-Rhône-Alpes
DepartmentPuy-de-Dôme
 Mayor (2014–2020)Olivier Bianchi
Area42.67 km2 (16.47 sq mi)
 Urban (2011)300 km2 (100 sq mi)
 Metro (2010)1,331 km2 (514 sq mi)
Population (2012)141,569
 Density3,300/km2 (8,600/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)

Name

Clermont-Ferrand’s first name was Augusta Nemetum. It was born on the central knoll where the cathedral is situated today, known then as Nemossos. It overlooked the capital of Gaulish Avernie. The fortified castle of Clarus Mons gave its name to the whole town in 848, to which the small episcopal town of Montferrand was attached in 1731, together taking the name of Clermont-Ferrand.

Geography

Climate

Thus the city has comparatively cold winters and hot summers. From November to March, frost is very frequent, and the city, being at the bottom of a valley, is frequently subject to temperature inversion, in which the mountains are sunny and warm, and the plain is freezing cold and cloudy.

Main sights

Religious architecture

Clermont-Ferrand has two famous churches. One is Notre-Dame du Port, a Romanesque church which was built during the 11th and 12th centuries. The other is Clermont-Ferrand Cathedral (Cathédrale Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption de Clermont-Ferrand), built in Gothic style between the 13th and the 19th centuries.

Parks and gardens

  • Jardin Lecoq
  • Parc du Montjuzet
  • Jardin botanique de la Charme
  • Arboretum de Royat
  • Jardin botanique d’Auvergne

Economy and infrastructure

Food production and processing as well as engineering are major employers in the area, as are the many research facilities of major computer software and pharmaceutical companies.

Transport

The main railway station has connections to Paris and several regional destinations: Lyon, Moulins via Vichy, Le Puy-en-Velay, Aurillac, Nîmes, Issoire, Montluçon and Thiers.

The airport offers flights within France. Recently, Clermont-Ferrand was France’s first city to get a new Translohr transit system, the Clermont-Ferrand Tramway, thereby linking the city’s north and south neighbourhoods.

Culture

Clermont-Ferrand was the home of mathematician and philosopher Blaise Pascal who tested Evangelista Torricelli’s hypothesis concerning the influence of gas pressure on liquid equilibrium. This is the experiment where a vacuum is created in a mercury tube: Pascal’s experiment had his brother-in-law carry a barometer to the top of the Puy-de-Dôme. The Université Blaise-Pascal (or Clermont-Ferrand II) is located primarily in the city and is named after him.

Clermont-Ferrand also hosts the Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival. This festival, which brings thousands of people every year (137,000 in 2008) to the city, is the second French film Festival after Cannes in term of visitors.

Beside the short film festival, Clermont-Ferrand hosts more than twenty music, film, dance, theatre and video and digital art festivals every year.

My Night at Maud’s, a 1969 French drama film by Éric Rohmer was set and filmed in Clermont-Ferrand in and around Christmas Eve.

Sport

A racing circuit, the Charade Circuit, close to the city, using closed-off public roads held the French Grand Prix in 1965, 1969, 1970 and 1972.

Clermont-Ferrand has some experience in hosting major international sports tournaments such as the FIBA EuroBasket 1999.

The city is also host to a rugby union club competing at international level, as well as Clermont Foot Auvergne.

Education

Education is also an important factor in the economy of Clermont-Ferrand. The University of Clermont Auvergne (formed from a merger of Université Blaise Pascal and Université d’Auvergne) is located there and has a total student population of over 37,000.

With around 1,000 students SIGMA Clermont is the biggest engineering graduate school in the city.

The ESC Clermont Business School, created in 1919, is also located in the city.

Contact

Ville de Clermont-Ferrand
email
contact@ville-clermont-ferrand.fr
address
10 Rue Philippe Marcombes, 63000 Clermont-Ferrand, France
phone
+33 4 73 42 63 63