Massy, first economic city of Essonne, has preserved its living environment through enhancement of its 130 hectares of green space. Twelve km from Paris and close to the main attractions of the Ile-de-France. The city of Massy is a tourist hub. The Opera of Massy, the only opera in ile-de-France outside Paris, appears as a symbol of cultural life. Between the International Circus Festival of Massy, a concert at Paul B, a recital at the Opera… Massy offers an exceptional program for children and adults. Massy sports city with more than 60 fields where amateurs alongside athletes.
Massy is one of the Essonne département’s major economic hubs. In 1958, the government gave the green light to a high-rise social housing development – the Massy-Antony Grand Ensemble – followed in the 1970s by the Nouveau Villaine. At the same time, the Champs-Ronds area (now the Atlantis district) began to fill with industrial companies.
Modern Massy is booming again: a TGV (high-speed train) station opened in 1991, while the Vilmorin residential area and the Atlantis mixed residential and business area have recently been developed.
Massy’s cultural offerings has the only opera house outside Paris in the Île-de-France region, inaugurated in 1993, and the Paul B Cultural Centre, acclaimed for “Les Primeurs de Massy”, a festival for up-and-coming musicians who have just released their first album. The town also has a wide range of sporting facilities equipped to host high-level competitive events.
The Château du Haut:
People have lived on the site of the château since 1630, although our knowledge of the various successive owners since the end of the 18th century is more complete: Madame de Vauxmoret sold it to Monsieur Collinet, who in turn sold it to Nicolas Appert. Then, in 1891, it was bought by Monsieur Guyot. It went on to became the property of the Compagnie des Eaux (the Water Company), and was finally purchased the town council.
It currently accommodates the offices of the town council’s Cultural Affairs Department. To the right, you can still see the Orangery, and further up, there is a well that serves two properties and can therefore be accessed by both via one higher and one lower entrance.
The Way of St James:
In the Middle Ages, the Way of St James (Le Chemin de Saint-Jacques de Compostelle in French) was one of the great three great pilgrimage routes, together with those that led to Rome and Jerusalem.
Coquille en bronze Saint-Jacques de Compostelle St James’s Way scallop shell in bronze in front of the Tourist Information Centre
Massy: a staging post. During the Paris-Massy stage the pilgrims can visit several cultural monuments like Notre Dame de Paris, la Sorbonne, le Parc de Sceaux and the Church of St. Mary Magdalene in Massy. The town of Massy is the first staging post in Essonne on the Paris and Tours Way of Saint James route – the Via Turonensis.
Starting at the Saint-Jacques Tower in Paris, the Via Turonensis passes through Tours and is one of the four routes that leads to Santiago de Compostela. The pilgrims arrive in Massy after a day’s walking along “la coulée verte” greenway. The next day they set off again, leaving Massy in the direction of Champlan to reach Arpajon.
During this stage, it is possible to pray in churches or basilics like la basilic Notre Dame de Bonne Garde at Longpont-sur-Orge, in church de Saint-Germain-lès-Arpajon and in church Saint Clément at Arpajon.