Lycée des Pontonniers
The lycée des Pontonniers school, an old barracks
The building, which overlooks the river Ill, used to be a barracks called the pontonniers, or bridging unit, which achieved lasting fame for its role in the Battle of Berezina during the retreat from Russia (26 November 1812). After Napoleon’s defeat, the barracks were left abandoned until 1902, when it was decided that they would be the ideal spot for a new girls’ school, the current one having outgrown its premises.
Historically-based architecture, inspired by the 15th and 16th centuries
The historically-based architecture of the lycée, with its characteristic bell tower, stands in contrast to the somewhat imposing appearance of the nearby University and official buildings. The architect, Gustave Oberthur, readily brought in architectural elements saved from demolished houses, such as an oriel window dating from 1589 taken from a house in rue des Serruriers, magnificent timber frames from rue du Parchemin (on the inside of the entrance gateway, there is even an illustration of the house in question, on glazed tiles) and pieces of stained-glass and other parts, completed by modern imitations.
The Pontonniers was a municipal lycée until 1930, before becoming a State lycée and then, in 1979, an international school catering for French and non-French students from the ages of 15 to 18.
- Tram C, E or F - Gallia
- Bus 10 or 30 - Gallia
1 rue des Pontonniers
Phone : +33 (0)3 88 37 15 25