Montpellier is quickly becoming one of the highest growth areas in France. Below, we take a look at the various transport options for arriving into and moving around this great city.
Montpellier was one of the first cities in France to have a railway, with the opening of the line on 9 June 1839. The passenger station of Montpellier’s Saint-Roch Train station allows you to make the journey from Montpellier to Paris-Gare de Lyon by TGV in 3 hours and 15 minutes since the last extension of the high-speed (TGV Mediterranean) in 2001.
In 2017, in the La Mogère, near the commercial area of Odysseum, the new station Montpellier-Sud-de-France will be launched as part of the railway bypass (high-speed) Nîmes – Montpellier. Located in the heart of the future district Oz southeast of the city, the TGV station, the host of the passenger building will span 4,000 to 5,000 metres square, and is expected to accommodate up to 3.5 million passengers per year in 2030.
In order to join this new station in the city center, the city provides for the extension of line 1 of the tramway, which should also serve the airport located a little further south, creating a real resource of exchanges in the new district.
For now, the pursuit of a high-speed line to Perpignan remains in draft form because of successive ministerial decisions. It competes with the stretch Narbonne – Toulouse (and Bordeaux), but especially with the Bordeaux section – San Sebastian (Spain).
Previously, the end of the 19th century early and in the second half of the 20th century, Montpellier was the terminus of several lines of the Company paths of local interest iron Hérault department, managed by the General advice, including the famous “Petit Train Palavas”.
Montpellier has over a million passengers per year and its airport serves many European cities and some cities in the Maghreb.
Montpellier is located along the A9 motorway, on which 4 outputs are dedicated to it: Montpellier North, East Montpellier, Montpellier South, Montpellier West. The network is often saturated at peak hours (8am to 9pm, 12am to 2pm and from 5pm to 7pm) because the highway is free between Baillargues east and Saint-Jean-de-Védas to west, and is therefore used by inhabitants as a bypass of the metropolis.
To address this problem, it is expected to split the A9 by a new section of 12km 2 to 3 lanes. Commissioning is scheduled for 2017. The existing portion (which takes the name A709) provides a local service role of the urban agglomeration of Montpellier.
Montpellier is also served by the A75 (Clermont-Ferrand – Béziers) via the A750, a ramp that connects Grabels, town located northeast of the city, with Ceyras Clermont l’Hérault.
Transport around cities
According to a study by a GPS manufacturer in 2015, Montpellier is the 6th most congested city in France. This is explained by the high population growth, its location at the edge of the A9, and the concentration of clusters in some areas of the city (Millennium Agropolis, Garosud) that are poorly served by public transport.
Since summer 2004, almost all of the historic center is for pedestrian use only and not accessible to motorized residents, and deliveries are only possible at set times (mostly at night). So it is best to park at the ends of the city (there are 16 parking spaces in connection with the tram) or come by train and use public transport, which seems the best solution.
The most saturated roads at peak hours are the Gambetta boulevard, the rue Anatole France, the tunnel of Comedy, avenue Pierre Mendes-France, the area around the high school Jean Mermoz and Corum, the Avenue of the justice, the roundabout in Lyra, and all access to the highway.
Bicycle use is becoming more and more common in Montpellier, which has about 160km of cycling tracks.