The French president has ambitious plans for the ‘city of love and romance’. His vision embraces a greener Paris, a city with improved transport facilities, a new metropolis that is able to compete with other grand cities such as New York and London.
Ten architects were asked to propose their own visions of a new Paris by designing plans which were exhibited to the French public late last month. President Sarkozy’s pledge is to invest a total of EURO35 billion into the remodelling of the city.
The funds are said to be released by means of a new government bill in October this year. The aim of this scheme is to give Parisian commuters better access to public transport to help alleviate congestion issues for the millions of commuters.
The idea is to draw the funds from a mixture of public and private sources. The funds would then pay for a new modern metro line that will link key suburbs together to allow Parisians better access to and from the city. Work is said to begin in 2012. The president also stated that this improved metro would cut commuting times between any two points in the city to about 30 minutes.
Proposals by the ten participating architects have seen elevated trains that will transport people with high-speed access, a green city center with Parisians strolling about, enjoying the scene and many other ‘green’ improvements. Talks of a new forest near the airport Charles de Gaulle and of some 70,000 new social housing units each year have also excited the public in France.
This development is a much needed upgrade for the French capital since around two million people live inside Paris’s rind road. This area is actually about 15 times smaller than Greater London making it impossible for traffic to flow at its optimum.
While this proposal is certainly a much needed vision for the city, the president also admitted it wouldn’t be without its challenges, since many politicians would oppose it due to its complexity and cost. However, he also said that it was a necessary upgrade to carry Paris seamlessly toward the future.