Low-Rise Paris Mulls High-Rise Revolution

Mayor, president team up to advocate new skyline for capital
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 23, 2007 2:05 PM CST
French socialist mayor of Paris Bertrand Delanoe.   (Getty Images (by Event))
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(Newser) – The mayor of Paris, Europe's most densely populated city, has unveiled an ambitious new plan to reinvent the city's skyline. Bertrand Delanoë wants to build a collection of skyscrapers in the north and east of the city, where a tall building hasn't been completed since 1977. Despite Delanoë's popularity, Parisians remain skeptical, so the Socialist mayor is teaming with a political opponent: Nicolas Sarkozy.

The mayor is expected to win reelection in March in a walkover and is making the skyscraper plans a centerpiece of his campaign. Yet in a city notoriously opposed to high-rises, Delanoë needed political backup. Sarkozy echoed the mayor's belief that the "ideological" opposition to skyscrapers is outdated. "I think the mayor of Paris agrees with me," said Sarkozy, to which Delanoë shot back, "No, you agree with me."