Champs-Élysées, the iconic avenue in central Paris, is all set for a complete transformation following the approval of plans to create an urban green oasis along the 1.9-kilometre route.
However, the €250-million (approx. AUD $400 million) greening project will begin only after the 2024 Summer Olympics, Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo said. The proposal, which has the backing of local community leaders, cultural organisations and businesses, aims to redevelop the stretch between Arc de Triomphe and Place de la Concorde into an ‘extraordinary garden’, restoring the avenue’s lost splendour.
First laid out in 1670 and renovated in mid-19th century, the famed Champs-Élysées has turned into a crowded, high-traffic shopping zone and a preferred location for protests. The green makeover is aligned with the Mayor’s efforts to create green spaces across the capital city.
Designed by architectural practice PCA-Stream, the project aims to mitigate the current environmental impact by significantly increasing pedestrian areas, reducing vehicular traffic, laying low noise road surfacing, and creating tunnels of trees and ‘planted living rooms’, all aimed at decreasing pollution, improving air quality, and introducing new public spaces for relaxation.
“The Champs-Élysées is becoming a collective space to experiment with the development of a sustainable, desirable and inclusive city by 2030 through focusing on four main strategic priorities: reducing the impact of urban mobilities, rethinking nature as an ecosystem, seeking new uses, and the use of data for measurement and regulation,” says PCA-Stream.
The Champs-Élysées urban transformation project is expected to be completed by 2030.