How large is a city? It is increasingly difficult to answer, as it is increasingly difficult to know what a city is. Anyway, if you take municipal limits, Montpellier is a city with a population slightly over 255.000 on a bit less than 57 sq km (compared to 605 sq km in Madrid, which has 12 times more population). It is common to see in France such a small municipal scale (over 36.000 municipalities when compared to some 8.000 in Spain, for countries with similar surface). So, in some matters, the correct comparison is not between municipalities, but between management logics for each space and each policy. In urban planning terms, if Montpellier has its own Plan Local d’Urbanisme, the SCOT covers the 31 municipalities of a Metro area that has administrative powers, and more interesting comparison items appear. Nevertheless, when you compare the city with Madrid, it is striking to see that both cities have addressed the issue of their urban cores at about the same time (PMC in Madrid, Grand Coeur in Montpellier).