Message from: S. Ellen H
About: Downtown / du centre ville

Wed, 04 Mar 1998 01:39:21 EST

A couple people have asked about "les centres-ville americains." This
is what we call "downtown." It is the main business center of a large
city, characterized by skyscrapers which house offices for banks,
corporate headquarters, etc.

Some of these buildings also have residential floors of "high-rise"
apartments. There are very few of these apartments, though, and they
are very, very expensive! Most of the people who live there are
probably businesspeople and executives.

In every downtown you'll find a region of several blocks (or more)
dedicated to shopping. Here the ground floors of the buildings are
occupied by upscale (expensive) department stores, restaurants, and
boutiques. These areas are pedestrian-oriented and fun to walk

Other things found in a downtown area can include performing arts
halls, medical centers, government buildings, and hotels. The
majority of the buildings are dedicated to business, though.