The July Column, known in French as Colonne de Juillet, which
commemorates the events of the July Revolution of 1830 stands at the centre of the square.
Other notable features include the Bastille Opera, the Bastille subway station and a
section of the Canal Saint Martin. But prior to 1984, the former Bastille railway
station stood where the opera house now stands.
The square is often home to concerts and similar events and the North Eastern area of
Bastille is busy at night due to it numerous bars, cafes, nightclubs, and concert halls.
Yet the square is often used for political demonstrations, including the massive anti-CPE
demonstration of March 28, 2006 due to its historical significance.
The large ditch, known as 'fosse' in French, which was behind the fort has been
transformed into a marina for pleasure boats, with the Bassin de l'Arsenal, to the South
and a covered canal, the Canal Saint Martin, extending North from the marina beneath the
vehicular roundabout that borders the location of the fort for some great boating holidays.
Some remains of one tower of the fort were discovered during excavation for the Metro rail
system in 1899, and were moved to a park a few hundred metres away, where they are still
on display today.
In the form of special paving stones, the original outline of the Bastille fort is also
marked on the pavement of streets and sidewalks that pass over its former location.
A cafe and some other businesses largely occupy the location of the fort, and the rue
Saint Antoine passes directly over it as it opens onto the roundabout of the Bastille.