On behalf of Americans for the Preservation of Paris (APP), and as U.S. liaison for French preservationist association SOS Paris, I would like to share some good news at this happy season. In fact, I rejoice at a wonderful year.
First, SOS Paris and SPPEF won a remarkable victory in the Samaritaine case in May. The court held that the seven-story tall undulating glass wall that LVMH proposed building on the historic rue de Rivoli side of the Samaritaine would be « dissonant. » Although alas demolition had already begun, it voided the construction and demolition permits. The decision of the appeals court is expected on January 5.
Second, thanks to hard-working reporter Brian Eads, the Paris skyscrapers debate got great coverage in the European edition of Newsweek. The report contains an excellent quote from SOS Paris president Olivier de Monicault. Meanwhile, anti-skyscraper forces won at least a temporary victory in the Paris City Council.
Third, thanks to the generous encouragement of our friend Notre Dame Professor Steven Semes and to funding support, ND student Connor Moran arrives in Paris on January 3 to work on a Samaritaine counter-proposal. The Secretary-General of SOS Paris, Jan Wyers, and the Adjunct SG, Christine Nedelec, will personally meet with him.
Fourth, my Paris talk at the School of Architecture at Notre Dame in October was a huge success, with a wonderful response from both students and faculty. I am bowled over! Please plan to attend when I speak at ICAA in New York on January 22 (« Will Development Destroy Paris? ») and for the Beaux Arts Alliance here (« We’ll Always Have Paris, or Will We? ») on February 17. Thanks to both organizations!
Finally, with help from board member Leonard Pitt, I got APP’s petition started against Paris skyscrapers. Sign the petition now if you have not done so already, and pass it on to your friends. Let’s make it viral!
Our great anti-skyscrapers book project is moving over to the web. Details in 2015!
Hoping that 2015 brings even greater events for our beloved Paris,
Mary Campbell Gallagher, President
Americans for the Preservation of Paris (APP)