Champs-Élysées in Paris set for inexperienced overhaul
(CNN) – One of the most famous streets in Paris, the Champs-Élysées, is undergoing a facelift that will transform itself into a green, pedestrian-friendly space after Mayor Anne Hidalgo launched a major renovation project.
The thoroughfare, one of the most famous shopping streets in the world, has space for eight lanes between the Arc de Triomphe and the Place de la Concorde.
According to the new plans of the architect Philippe Chiambaretta and his agency PCA-STREAM, vehicle traffic will be reduced by half, while pedestrians can enjoy wider sidewalks and more greenery in the spaces designated by the agency as “planted” living rooms.
The avenue is becoming greener and more pedestrian-friendly.
The redesign aims to attract more visitors to an area that had lost its upscale luster before the pandemic, especially after sometimes violent demonstrations by so-called “Gilet Jaune” demonstrators.
The Champs-Élysées Committee, a local federation committed to promoting and developing the area, celebrated the news in a statement on Sunday after Hidalgo’s announcement in an interview with the French newspaper Le Journal du Dimanche.
“The mythical avenue has lost its splendor in the last 30 years,” said the committee, which began three years ago with proposals for overhauling the area.
“It was gradually abandoned by the Parisians and has suffered a series of crises: the gilets jumps, strikes, the health and economic crisis,” the committee said in the statement.
The Place de la Concorde is also being rejuvenated.
According to PCA-STREAM, more than two-thirds of pedestrian traffic comes from tourists, with Parisians accounting for just 5% of all traffic.
In the statement, the committee said it was celebrating the decision that shows that the town hall “intends to make the total renovation of the Champs-Élysées one of the most outstanding urban projects of the decade”.
Hidalgo said the first phase of the project will include the renovation of Place de la Concorde, which will take place before Paris hosts the 2024 Summer Olympics, and the rest of the street will be completed after the Games.
A Paris City Hall spokesman told CNN that more details of the plan will be announced next week.
The Paris authorities are also working on a more comprehensive revitalization plan ahead of the 2024 Olympics.
Abandoned, disused and outdated rooms are given a new life as new restaurants, theme hotels, museums and leisure hotspots.
Some of the projects were selected as part of the city’s “Reinventing Paris” urban renewal campaign, which was first launched in 2014. This includes a comprehensive renovation of the Seine and the greening of the Eiffel Tower.