Green patch in Nice city center : La Promenade du Paillon

Green Patch

Besides beneficial effects on air quality, urban vegetation provides also other services that can improve human well-being and the sustainability of cities. Urban trees have been cited as possessing unique climate, soils, vegetation, social dynamics, and flows of energy as a result of different ecological patterns, processes and disturbances. Today, it is accepted both internationally and locally that green areas are important for the quality of life in urban areas. Urban trees provide a number of services that contribute directly and indirectly to human wellbeing. There are four main types: provisioning services; regulating services (e.g. flood and disease control); supporting/habitat services (e.g. nutrient cycling); and cultural services (e.g. recreation). These services are a part of the aesthetic legacy of mankind and counteract stress in human beings, supporting our psychological capacity and mental health. Loss of biodiversity and ecosystems has social, environmental and economic consequences.

Green Path

In summary, the main benefits of urban trees are:

  • Social benefits: recreation opportunities, improvement of home and work environments, impacts on physical and mental health.
  • Aesthetic and architectural benefits: landscape variation through different colors, textures, forms and densities of plants. Growth of trees, seasonal dynamics and experiencing nature.
  • Climatic and physical benefits: cooling, wind control, impacts on urban climate through temperature and humidity control. Air pollution reduction, sound control, glare and reflection reduction, flood prevention and erosion control.
  • Ecological benefits: biotopes for flora and fauna in urban environment.
  • Economic benefits: value of market-priced benefits, increased property values, tourism.

Green Path

Key figures

The green patch represents 40,000 m² of planted areas with:

  • 1,600 trees, more than 50 different tree species according to the “zoological gardens” concept
  • Trees from the 5 continents occurring in a similar climate.
  • 22.000m² of wooded banks ("a wealth riparian forest").
  • 17.000m² of lawned area
  • 6,000 shrubs
  • 50,000 perennials and grasses

A green area of 12 hectares in the heart of the old-city for for the citizen well-being : conviviality, pleasure, recreation... A botanical trip across continents... Trees, shrubs, plants from all continents are distributed along the "Promenade du Paillon". All species are marked by flash codes to obtain more information by Apps.

Mediterranean honor

The Mediterranean is widely present in the green patch with Holm oaks, majestic Stone pine or cypress of Provence. The central green strip is planted with olive trees, vineyards, carob, pomegranate, fig trees and other trees of southern Europe.


Camphor trees and giant bamboo (already a height of 10m), as well as a collection of citrus to keep in mind that before to bloom along the French Riviera (17th century), lemons and oranges are native to China and India.


A grove of Senegal date palm (Phoenix reclinata), consisting of several amazing palm trees with several trunks, the Coral trees (Erythrina) with a splendid orange-red blooming in spring, and the exceptional scarlet Aloe flowers.

Oceania and Australia

Walk in a eucalyptus forest with remarkable specimens. In summer, the red-flowered kurrajong (Brachychiton) will compete with the "wheels of fire" of Stenocarpus sinuatus, flamboyant inflorescence trees. Dozens of tree ferns (up to 2m of height) are planted under the protection of the giant Ficus.

South America

The yellow flowers of Tipuana tipu, also known as Rosewood and Pride of Bolivia or the pink flowers of the silk floss tree (Chorisia speciosa), a bottle-tree, with a thorny trunk to protect itself against the attacks by herbivores. Among other curiosities, Jubaea chilensis (Chilean Wine Palm) producing mini coconuts (eatable).

North America

Dozens of magnolias, oaks, Walnut trees and maple of America. Tones from yellow to red and brown ... for an Indian summer in Nice.

Preservation of Dianthus

Dianthus is a genus of about 300 species of flowering plants in the family Caryophyllaceae, native mainly to Europe and Asia. Common names include carnation (D. caryophyllus), pink (D. plumarius and related species) and sweet william (D. barbatus).


If the "Promenade du Paillon" wants cosmopolitan with plants from all continents, it also pays tribute to the Carnation, symbol of the city. An area of more than 2000 Carnations recalls the period when Nice was the world's capital of Carnations. These flowers, covering the hills of Nice, was exported around the World. The Golden Age, reached in 1950-1960, began to decline in the early 1970s due to several factors: pest occurrence, real estate pressure and the increasing competition from Netherlands. Today, few horticulturists still preserve this tradition.

Promenade du Paillon

A large "water mirror"

A large "water mirror", of 3.000 m² with 128 water jets, constitutes a thin water layer on natural stones. The haze zone, of 1.400m², on a paving with basalts and limestones, is composed of 960 sprayers, shaping a "cloud" where you can meander. The humidity and coolness allow the discomfort mitigation produced by the urban heat island.

water mirror

High Environmental Quality approach

  • Respect the charter for a "green site"
  • Biodiversity protection (planting of new Mediterranean species)
  • Use of sustainable and recycled materials
  • Energy conservation, energy saving, efficient lighting…
  • Improve the city planning
  • Reduce the disturbance of landscapes and ecological corridors
  • Promote and strengthen ecological continuity/corridors