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The Renovation and Protection of Paris: Experience, Lessons and Implications(No 29, 2016)


By Zhou Qunli, Research Team on “A Comparative Study on the Development and Governance of Typical Capital Cities”, DRC

Research Report, Special Issue, No 29, 2016 (Total NO 1504) 2016-06-27

Abstract: In the 19th century the layout of Paris was featured by a concentric sprawling pattern, troubled by swift increase of urban population, traffic congestion and other issues relating to big cities. In mid-19th century, the city government of Paris conducted a large-scale renovation project, addressed some urban issues and improved the city’s functions. However, in the process of urban renovation, a host of historical architecture was demolished, and the suburban citizens also made complaints over the urban citizens’ building of garbage disposal plants and other facilities in rural areas, thus arousing some social conflicts. Since the 20th century, the city government of Paris has taken a number of measures to enhance city planning. It has made efforts to protect historical relics, given subsidies to projects for the renovation of historical and cultural sites, demolished illegal buildings, reduced the number of city residents, and offered rent subsidies to low-income citizens, so as to ensure that the renovation projects could be fulfilled in a smooth manner. In addition, the city government of Paris has, on the basis of the monocentric model, built several new towns with reasonable locations and adequate functions for convenient transport of urban dwellers. This has not only reduced the number of urban population and businesses in downtown areas, but also protected the historical and cultural heritages, and provided new space for urban development.

Key words: protection of cultural heritages, infrastructure construction, building of new towns