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Mairie de Vitré

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Porch houses on Rue de la Poterie

 
Porch house on Rue Poterie - JPEG - 20.5 kb
Porch house on Rue Poterie

Rue de la Poterie is the only street in Vitré on which such a large number of half-timbered houses, also known as porch houses or overhangs, remain intact. This type of building is special in the sense that it has a covered overhang, forming a porch over the ground floor which hangs out over the street. Aligning several of these overhangs created a covered market alley perfect for displaying produce. One might even say they were the forefathers of the shopping arcades of the classical era. This overhang also expanded the living area on the upper floors. The extra surface could not be taxed, as tax was calculated according to the ground-floor living area