The BnF

Maps and Plans Department

For two centuries, the Department of Maps and plans has been collecting specialized documents in the field, making them available to readers. It is a French pole of excellence recognized at the international level in the field of cartographic and geographic information. It houses collections of atlases, maps, plans, globes, monographs and periodicals, whether from France or foreign countries. Dating back to the Middle-Ages up to the 21st century, they meet the researchers' needs in a wide variety of domains.
Since 1942, the Department has been also housing the collections of the Société de Géographie: printed documents, photographs, manuscripts...
The reading room is open to the readers of the Research Library; the consultation of certain documents is possible only after an interview with a librarian.

Maps and Plans Department: Practical information


François-Mitterrand Library
Quai François-Mauriac
75706 Paris Cedex 13

Opening hours

Closed on public holidays:

  • 1st of January
  • Easter Sunday and Monday
  • 1 and 8 May
  • Ascension Thursday
  • Pentecost Sunday and Monday
  • 14 July
  • 15 August
  • 1 and 11 November
  • 25 December

Annual closing of the BnF sites located in Paris (François-Mitterrand, Richelieu and Louvois, Arsenal and Opéra Libraries): During the annual closing of the BnF, various operations are achieved on the BnF premises and public spaces: repair, maintenance or cleaning work. Each year, the sites mentioned above are closed about ten days from the end of August to the beginning of September. The 2018 closing dates will be announced later.

Consulting documents

The Department of Maps and Plans is located in Room R (Research Library - Rez-de-jardin level) at François-Mitterrand Library until the reopening of its renovated spaces at Richelieu Library, planned for 2020.
Collections are available for consultation on Monday from 2 pm to 6 pm, from Tuesday to Friday from 10 am to 6 pm and on Saturdays from 10 am to 5 pm.

Document release times
  Monday Tuesday to Friday Saturday
All documents except Reserve 14:30, 15:00 10:30, 11:30, 14:00, 15h30 10:30, 11:30, 14:30
Reserve 14:30 10:30, 11:30, 14:00 no document release

Order forms are collected at set times.
The requested documents are generally delivered about 45 minutes after the collection of order forms. 

Lecteurs au département des Cartes et plans
You need a reader's card to have access to the Research Library's documents.
In case there exists a copy of the document, you will be invited to consult it in priority. Consulting the original document is submitted to prior authorization.
Because of collections' transfers or digitization operations, the communication of certain documents may be impossible or delayed. For more information, please contact the Department.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016


Eve Netchine
Phone :
Fax :
Email :

For any bibliographic research, use our « Ask a librarian service » (SINDBAD)
Ask a librarian (SINDBAD)