The decisive transformation of Paris in the mid-nineteenth century took place under Napoleon III. But his uncle Napoleon, who held power over France and a broad swath of Europe several decades earlier, had his own notable role in the evolution of the city. In an exhibition now in its final days, the Musėe Carnavalet retraces the impact of Napoleon on the city of Paris.
Continue reading Napoleon and Paris at the Musée Carnavalet
As Paris enters the final days of a hard-fought Mayoral race, one thing is clear. The terms of political debate permanently shifted during the administration of outgoing Mayor Bertrand Delanoë, and a remarkable consensus has emerged over environmental concerns.
Read the full article on pps.org
This week I have written a guest post for the Project for Public Spaces’ blog. PPS sees the proactive approach Paris is taking with its public spaces as “fundamental to the future of cities.” Read the piece on the the PPS web site.
Continue reading Taking the Next Step: Paris Leads With Innovation in the Streets
After a period of spurning our cities, we are again becoming an urban nation.
For years, investments in highways, malls, and residential developments were focused on the suburbs. The infrastructure of America’s great historical cities, so often mired in fiscal difficulty, was left to decay.
Today we are seeing a resurgence of the urban spirit. We have woken again to the social benefits of city life. We appreciate the exchange and innovation, the cultural vibrancy, and the economic and environmental benefits of compact living. Large-scale development projects are underway in the city centers and city governments are again spending on urban infrastructure.
Continue reading The Cities We Leave to Future Generations
A week ago, Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoë inaugurated the new Place de la République. Last Wednesday, he was on the banks of the river Seine, inaugurating another emblematic project of his municipal administration, the newly pedestrianized banks of the Seine.
Continue reading The Newly Pedestrianized Banks of the Seine
I described in a previous post how the place de la République has been a 150-year urban design headache. So when I visited the space on the day of its opening, after nearly two years of construction, what I wanted to know was if the urban design conundrum had finally been solved.
Continue reading The Unveiling of the New Place de la République
To accompany the reading of Paris Reborn, this annotated map shows the location of the streets, squares, parks and buildings created during the Second Empire transformation of Paris (1848-1870). Click on any item for more information or zoom for a better view. If you click through to the Google Maps page you can also scroll down the left to see the list of places.
View Paris Reborn in a larger map
Continue reading Paris Reborn Map
As Paris’s Deputy Mayor in charge of “Paris Métropole” and relations with the region’s other local governments, Pierre Mansat is at the center of the debate regarding Paris’s governance.
I had a chance to sit down with him and discuss the historic changes underway following the Prime Minister’s announcement last month of the creation of a new metropolitan entity for Paris.
Lire cet article en français
Continue reading Paris’s Future Governance – An Interview with Pierre Mansat
The Seine has risen to surprising levels this year. My friend Laurent Deburge has taken a series of wonderful pictures capturing this special moment.
Continue reading The Seine Also Rises – Pictures by Laurent Deburge
Here are some pictures taken today on a snowy place du Panthéon. I am taking advantage of the photographs of the Bibliothèque Sainte-Geneviève to update my post on Henri Labrouste.
Continue reading Paris in the Snow