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What the Eiffel Tower will look like in 2024

Ahead of the 2024 Olympic Games, Paris' Eiffel Tower is getting a facelift - here's what the famous Champ-de-Mars is set to look like, and why the revamp has sparked protests.

What the Eiffel Tower will look like in 2024
The Esplanade du Trocadero near the Eiffel tower (Photo by LUDOVIC MARIN / AFP)

After concern over plans to cut down the 42 trees lining the Eiffel Tower in order to build tourist facilities, Paris’ Mayor’s office has agreed to revise plans for the renovation of Champs-de-Mars. 

But the Eiffel Tower and the whole of the Champ-de-Mars area are still expected to be completely transformed ahead of the 2024 Olympics.

Here is what it’s set to look like:

The tower will be painted gold

For its latest paint job, the famous Iron Lady will be returned to the “yellow-brown” colour Gustave Eiffel intended for it in 1907. The tower was originally painted red when it was first presented during the 1889 World’s Fair, and it has sported 20 different shades over the years. The “yellow-brown” colour is intended to be a nod to the colour of Olympic medals.

READ MORE: Plan to fell trees near Eiffel Tower causes backlash from residents in French capital

“It will give the Eiffel Tower a more ‘golden’ look during the Olympics compared to the colour we used to have,” explained Patrick Branco Ruivo, general manager of the Sete, the operating company of the Parisian monument to AFP

Rope access technicians repaint the Eiffel Tower on February 1, 2021 in Paris. (Photo by Martin BUREAU / AFP)
 

The Pont d’Iéna will become pedestrian only

The bridge connecting the Eiffel Tower on rive gauche to Trocadéro on rive droite will soon become no-car zone, lined with trees and greenery. Only public transport and emergency vehicles will use the lanes that have been built in place of the current sidewalks.

“It was time to make it easier for pedestrians to get around,” explained the Mayor’s office to French daily Le Parisien.

 

A walkable area under the Tower

The space under the Eiffel Tower will be revitalised with walking paths and grass. 

 
 
A new, green amphitheatre at Trocadero
 
There will no longer be a traffic circle around the statue of Marshal Foch. Instead, cars will circulate in two directions on the outside side. New tiered seating will be built onto the Place de Trocadero, offering over 12,000 seats and a lovely view of the tower. 

A green promenade on the quai Branly

The Quai Branly will also become green and walkable, with hedges and shrubs planted along the roadway to protect pedestrians from traffic. The number of lanes for cars will be reduced from four to two, and a maximum speed of 20 kilometers per hour will be implemented to give pedestrians the priority.

READ MORE: Anne Hidalgo’s eco-friendly plans for Paris: Speed limits, parking spaces and bikes

Not everyone is too pleased with these plans, particularly those living in the immediate vicinity.

Danièle Giazzi, mayor of the 16th arrondisement, told Paris daily Le Parisien that he fears the “risk of blockage in the whole sector” and that he “does not like the fact that one can no longer go from the left bank to the right bank and vice versa, except by scooter.”

To visualise the change in traffic patterns, Le Parisien created this infographic

La fontaine de Varsovie

The walkways on the east and west sides of the Warsaw Fountain will be redesigned to be more accessible for families and for those with mobile disabilities. Lawned steps and terraces, covered with grass, will be used for festive events.

The majority of the Warsaw Square will be reserved for pedestrians, and eventually it will be used for other festive events. 

Paris’ own ‘Central Park’

When all of the work has been completed, this Champ-de-Mars gardens will extend all the way to the École Militaire. This will become a promenade of more than 1.5 kilometers, or 50 hectares, the equivalent of about 70 soccer fields.

Speaking of the new ‘lungs’ for the city, Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo said: “We’re going to have an extraordinary garden to hear the birds sing again.”

Member comments

  1. This kind of reflex anti-car stuff is one reason Hidalgo did so badly in the election. Nothing is thought thru, and there are no alternatives for those who, for various reasons, need cars. Not everyone is a super-fit cyclist of 30 with nothing to carry.

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POLITICS

Macron caps US state visit with New Orleans trip

President Emmanuel Macron on Friday headed to the southern American city of New Orleans, which retains much of its French-infused heritage, as he wraps up a rare three-day state visit to the United States.

Macron caps US state visit with New Orleans trip

After vowing continued support for Ukraine and seeking to quell a EU-US trade dispute during White House talks with President Joe Biden, Macron was expected to meet with local officials and energy companies in New Orleans and unveil a French language program.

Once a French colonial city, New Orleans was sold to the United States by Napoleon as part of the Louisiana Purchase of 1803, and Macron has called it “the quintessential francophone land.”

Macron will promote an initiative to broaden access to French language education for American students, with a focus on disadvantaged groups “for whom the French language can be a multiplier of opportunities,” the French leader said.

Addressing members of the French community in Washington on Wednesday, Macron added that he wanted to revamp the image of the French tongue in the United States, “which is sometimes seen as elitist.”

Macron will follow in the footsteps of French President Charles de Gaulle, who visited New Orleans in 1960. As he strolls through the streets of “NOLA,” Macron is likely to stop by the “Vieux Carre,” or “French Quarter”, the bustling historic city center.

“We have a history in New Orleans and important things to say there concerning both our history and what we want to do for the future,” the Elysee Palace said in a statement.

Energy and climate

Besides celebrating French-American ties, Macron will pay tribute to the victims of Hurricane Katrina which killed more than 1,800 people in and around New Orleans and caused billions of dollars in damage in 2005.

Macron will also meet with businesses “devoted to energy and climate issues,” according to his office, while French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna and Louisiana Governor John Edwards will sign an energy deal.

Accompanied by French film director Claude Lelouch and dancer and choreographer Benjamin Millepied, Macron will meet local artists and prominent cultural figures of New Orleans, known as the birthplace of jazz.

The visit will come on the heels of a lavish dinner at the White House, headlined by master jazzman Jon Batiste, who comes from a family of New Orleans musicians.

Macron’s state visit — the first such formal occasion since Biden took office in January 2021 — symbolized how Washington and Paris have buried last year’s bitter spat over the way Australia pulled out of a French submarine deal in favor of acquiring US nuclear subs instead.

The visit featured a full military honor guard for Macron, including service members from the marines, army, air force and even a detachment of soldiers in 18th-century Revolutionary War garb.

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