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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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TRAVEL

VIDEO: 7 of the most beautiful train journeys in France

From Alpine valleys to the Mediterranean coastline via viaducts, gorges and vineyards - France boasts plenty of stunningly beautiful train journeys. Here's our pick of some of the most spectacular.

VIDEO: 7 of the most beautiful train journeys in France

There’s no doubt that train travel is having a bit of a moment, as travellers shun planes for the greener and more relaxing alternative of the railways – French rail operator SNCF has added an extra 500,000 seats to cope with soaring demand this summer.

With its high-speed TGV network, France is particularly good at train travel. But as well as being better for both the planet and your sense of adventure, railways have one extra advantage – great views.

Here’s our pick of seven breathtaking rail journeys in France that will show you way train travel is still the best travel.

The Côte d’Azur

A – very affordable – train journey along the coast of the Côte d’Azur is one of the great French travel experiences – the train hugs the cliffs on one side, as the sea laps against the coast on the other. 

Head from Marseille to Nice – and perhaps on to Monaco, Menton and Italy – on the Marseille-Ventimiglia line – passing through the glamorous Riviera resorts of Cannes and Antibes, as well as Juan-les-Pins, and Villefranche-sur-Mer and Cap d’Ail if you opt to head towards the Italian border.

La Ligne des Hirondelles

This two-and-a-half hour, 123 km journey between Dole and Saint-Claude in eastern France on a typically comfortable TER train passes far too quickly.

It goes through the forest of Chaux, the Jura vineyards, the valley of Grandvaux, the Valley of Bienne… not to mention crossing 36 tunnels and 18 viaducts.

A joy from start to finish.

La Ligne de Cerdagne

If you haven’t heard of the train jaune, you’re in for a thoroughly pleasant surprise.

A true emblem of the south west, the yellow train travels the heights of the Pyrénées-Orientales through forests, chasms, gorges, viaducts, past old fortresses and a precariously perched monastery on a 63k m picture-postcard journey between Villefranche-de-Conflent and Latour-de-Carol, nearly 1,600m above sea level.

Two types of trains operate on this route, a modern enclosed train as well as an older historic train that sometimes runs with open carriages when mountain weather allows.

Le train de Montenvers

Not to be outdone by those upstarts in the Pyrenees, the Alps has the bright red train de Montenvers, which climbs from the Chamonix valley around Mont Blanc, before stopping at the Mer de Glaces all year round.

In winter, you can watch skiers doing their thing on the slopes. In summer, the stunning scenery will just have to do…

La Ligne des Cévennes

The 304 km journey from Clermont-Ferrand to Nîmes never looked so good, passing through astonishing landscape including the spectacular Gorges de l’Allier and the peaceful Cévennes national park.

The train route also crosses numerous equally astonishing 19th-century bridges and viaducts – including the twin curved 433m Chapeauroux Viaduct, and the 409m Chamborigaud Viaduct.

Le Mastrou

The age of steam still has the power to get rail travel lovers all emotional.

The 130-year-old Le Mastrou train travels from Tournon-Saint Jean through the stunning Ardèche landscape, crosses the Gorges du Doux for a relaxing lunch in the picturesque town of Lamastre in the mountains. 

Interloire

One for cyclists – the link between Orléans and Le Croisic, on the Atlantic coast, cuts through the painfully pretty Loire Valley and passes through Nantes and Angers, following the Loire à Vélo path. In summer, cycles can be safely stored for the journey in a dedicated wagon.

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