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Paris OKs 1st Skyscraper in 40 Years

Monday, July 6, 2015

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PARIS--It took two votes, including one in private, but the French capital is about to get its first skyscraper in four decades.

 Herzog & de Meuron

Paris is about to get its first skyscraper in 40 years. Paris City Council members voted June 30 to approve the Tour Triangle, which was designed by Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron.

The Paris City Council voted, 87-74, on Tuesday (June 30) to allow the 42-story Tour Triangle, according to a report in The Independent.

Forever Changing the Landscape

When complete, the glass and steel building, which will resemble a flattened pyramid, will transform a skyline that historically has been more classical and horizontal.

At 180 meters (590 feet), the Tour Triangle will be the tallest building erected in Paris since the 1970s. After the 231-meter-tall (757-foot) Tour Montparnasse opened in 1973, critics sought a height limit.

In 1977, the city imposed a 39-meter (127-foot) cap.

 Herzog & de Meuron

When complete, the 180-meter-tall (590-foot) glass and steel building will be the first skyscraper in Paris since the city lifted a height restriction five years ago.

Not until 2010 did the city do away with the height limit. By then, Swiss architect Herzog & de Meuron had a two-year jump on publishing plans for its first version of the Tour Triangle.

The Eiffel Tower, at 300 meters (984 feet) tall, still will rule the Paris skyline.

'There Goes the Neighbourhood'

Not everyone in the traditional city is happy about their new neighbor. The French Green Party has said the building lacks energy efficiency, and neighbors of the forthcoming project took to social media to voice their displeasure.

“Well, there goes the neighbourhood,” said @garryts, whose Tweet was posted on The Independent’s website.

 Herzog & de Meuron

The €500 million project (about $554 million USD) will have a 120-room, four-star hotel; a restaurant; a sky bar a la London’s Shard; and office space. It also will create about 5,000 jobs, backers say.

Others, such as Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, expressed satisfaction at finally getting skyscraper approval. Following Tuesday’s vote, she Tweeted that she was “proud and happy that Triangle could be born in Paris.”

In fact, Hidalgo was responsible for giving the skyscraper a second chance.

Council members first rejected the Tour Triangle in November 2014. But the mayor said that vote was a result of "inter-party fighting" that influenced the outcome, so she dismissed it.

Hidalgo's decision led to Tuesday's private vote.

When complete, the €500-million ($554-million) project will house a 120-room, four-star hotel; a restaurant; a sky bar a la London’s The Shard; and office space.

The combined businesses are projected to create 5,000 jobs, according to LeMonde.


Tagged categories: Architects; Architecture; Commercial / Architectural; Construction

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