Grand Est (French pronunciation: [ɡʁɑ̃t‿ɛst] ( listen); English: Great East, German: Großer Osten — both in the Alsatian and the Lorraine Franconian dialect), previously Alsace-Champagne-Ardenne-Lorraine (ACAL or less commonly, ALCA), is an administrative region in northeastern France. It superseded three former administrative regions—Alsace, Champagne-Ardenne, and Lorraine—on 1 January 2016, as a result of territorial reform which was passed by the French legislature in 2014. Alsace-Champagne-Ardenne-Lorraine was a provisional name, created by hyphenating the merged regions in alphabetical order; its regional council had to approve a new name for the region by 1 July 2016. France's Conseil d'État approved Grand Est as the new name of the region on 28 September 2016, effective 30 September 2016. The administrative capital and largest city is Strasbourg.
The provisional name of the region was Alsace-Champagne-Ardenne-Lorraine, which is formed by combining the names of the three present regions—Alsace, Champagne-Ardenne, and Lorraine—in alphabetical order with hyphens. The formula for the provisional name of the region was established by the territorial reform law and applied to all but one of the provisional names for new regions. The ACAL regional council, which was elected in December 2015, was given the task of choosing a name for the region and submitting it to the Conseil d'État—France's highest authority for administrative law—by 1 July 2016 for approval. The provisional name of the region was retired on 30 September 2016, when the new name of the region, Grand Est, took effect.
In Alsace and in Lorraine, the new region has frequently been called ALCA, for Alsace-Lorraine-Champagne-Ardennes, on the internet.
Like the name Région Hauts-de-France (and, until 2015, the name Région Centre), the name Région Grand Est contains no reference whatsoever to the area's history or identity, but merely describes its geographical location within metropolitan France.
In a poll conducted in November 2014 by France 3 in Champagne-Ardenne, Grand Est (29.16%) and Austrasie (22.65%) were the top two names among 25 candidates and 4,701 votes. Grand Est also topped a poll the following month conducted by L'Est Républicain, receiving 42% of 3,324 votes.
Among the names which have received a moderate amount of discussion are:
Grand Est covers 57,433 square kilometres (22,175 sq mi) of land and is the sixth-largest of the regions of France. Grand Est borders four countries—Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, and Switzerland—along its northern and eastern sides. It is the only French region to border more than two countries. To the west and south, it borders the French regions Hauts-de-France, Île-de-France, and Bourgogne-Franche-Comté.
Grand Est is the result of territorial reform legislation passed in 2014 by the French Parliament to reduce the number of regions in Metropolitan France—the part of France in continental Europe—from 22 to 13. ACAL is the merger of three regions: Alsace, Champagne-Ardenne, and Lorraine.
The merger has been, and still is, strongly opposed by some groups in Alsace, and a large majority of Alsatians. The territorial reform law allows new regions to choose the seat of the regional councils, but specifically made Strasbourg the seat of the Grand Est regional council—a move to appease the region's politicians.
The region has an official population of 5,554,645 (municipal population on 1 January 2014).
|Cities with over 20,000 inhabitants||Former region||2014|
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The regional council has limited administrative authority, mostly concerning the promotion of the region's economy and financing educational and cultural activities. The regional council has no legislative authority. The seat of the regional council will be Strasbourg. The regional council, elected in December 2015, is controlled by The Republicans. The elected inaugural president of the Grand Est Regional Council is Philippe Richert, who was previously the President of the Alsace Regional Council. The current president is Jean Rottner.
The region has five tram networks:
The region has four airports:
The region has eighteen motorways:
The region has twelve cities that have ring roads:
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (January 2016)
Grand Est is rich with architectural monuments from the Roman Empire to the early 21st century.
Gothic architecture is particularly conspicuous, with many famous cathedrals, basilicas and churches, such as Reims Cathedral, Strasbourg Cathedral, Metz Cathedral, Troyes Cathedral, Châlons Cathedral, Toul Cathedral, the Basilica of L'Épine, the Basilica of Saint-Nicolas-de-Port, the Basillica of Avioth, the Basilica of St. Urbain in Troyes, Thann Church, Niederhaslach Church, Notre-Dame-en-Vaux, St. George's Church, Sélestat and St. Peter and St. Paul's Church, Wissembourg.
[Members of the National Assembly] decided Thursday, 20 November to designate in advance Strasbourg as the capital of the future region Alsace-Champagne-Ardenne-Lorraine in a gesture to appease the Alsatian politicians. (From French: Les députés ont décidé jeudi 20 novembre de désigner par avance Strasbourg comme capitale de la future grande région Alsace-Champagne-Ardenne-Lorraine dans un geste d'apaisement vis-à-vis des élus alsaciens.)
|Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Grand-Est.|