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Old July 26th, 2006, 01:59 AM   #261
Europeo
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2013 plan for the defence

summary for people who cant speak french ...

actually the big meeting to explain everything .... is like a company meeting attended by french employees ....
they spoke about everything else (who made the coffee, how do u find my new ty, i had great sex yesterday..etc....) and the final text is actually like a ******* mess ...
no one, even french people like me ... are actually sure about what they wanted to say ...
tipycally and desesperatly french ... no decision have been made ... political problems are included ... like we cant make crucial decisions until the new president will have been elected next year ....

but like a play of moliere, we can find some pists:
the tall one "signal" will be built .... but we dont know the size ... neither the specification etc ... it could be 300m or 400m... with a spire without it ... no one actually know ... maybe not even the architects who will participate at the contest ...

17 towers will be "changed" ... some will be renovated and will be taller ... some will be destroy and replaced by taller ones.... and of course, french way, we still dont really know which one ....

500000m square will b built ... something like 150000m with the renovations and the others by new building ...

i hope i have been clear ....
to conclude, i will say that we have no more information than 2 days ago ... we have to wait .... certainly until our very old and stupid and anachronic president left the office (may 2007) ...
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Old July 26th, 2006, 02:00 AM   #262
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wjfox2002
In English, please.
Our main concern is the fact the 400m supertall which was announced nearly one year ago will surely be shortened (you know, just like LBT...), but we have no precise information about the final height of this tower (probably between 300 and 350 meters, or perhaps 399 meters ).

About 650.000sqm of existing office spaces will be upgraded, half of them before 2013. Most of the towers concerned by this upgrade will be rebuilt, with the possibility to had 50% of additionnal floor space to each rebuilt tower (that makes about 150.000sqm of additionnal office space added through this process).

New towers will also be built by 2013 (about 300.000m2 of office space).

Housing developpments are also to be built by 2013 (about 1.400 flats) in and around LD.

Apparently, they decided to split the project in two periods: 2007-2013 and then 2013-2020...

That's all for now...
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Old July 26th, 2006, 02:55 AM   #263
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No 399.8 meter
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Old July 29th, 2006, 10:49 PM   #264
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Ok, here is a summary of the announcements made on Tuesday, as promised. I was able to watch the entire video of the two ministers who made the announcement, so this is first hand information, not merely what newspapers reported about it.

First of all, let me make it clear from the start: if you're waiting for renderings, exact number of towers, or height figures, you're gonna be disappointed. The press conference was not like, say, when the mayors of Moscow or Shanghai make very showy announcements with bold renderings, detailed figures, and so forth. This was a rather technical press meeting, designed more for investors than for PR or skyscraper enthusiasts. The ministers essentially focused on how many sq. meters are allowed to be built, and what are the rules for investors, in particular tax breaks to entice investors.

So here it goes. In December last year, La Défense Authority officially announced that between 2006 and 2015 they planned the construction of 500,000 m² (5.4 million sq. ft) of new office space, and the reconstruction/refurbishment of 350,000 m² (3.8 million sq. ft) of obsolete office space. They said that the government would approve or reject the plan by the middle of this year. On Tuesday, the ministers announced that they approve the construction of 450,000 m² (4.8 million sq. ft) of new office space, and the reconstruction/refurbishment of 325,000 m² (3.5 million sq. ft).

There are two things to note. First, the government roughly approved 90% of the project designed by La Défense Authority. However, the ratio of sq. meters is slightly changed compared to the initial project made public last December. Initially, the 500,000 m² of new office space were to be inside new skyscrapers built on currently empty lots at La Défense. Now, out of the 450,000 m² approved, only 300,000 m² (3.2 million sq. ft) will be in skyscrapers built on empty lots. The remaining 150,000 m² (1.6 million sq. ft) will be new office space resulting from the reconstruction of old towers.

Here is indeed the most important part of the La Défense 2013 project: the reconstruction/refurbishment of old towers. The ministers declared that Ernst & Young identified 17 towers in La Défense that are obsolete. These 17 towers contain 650,000 m² (7 million sq. ft) of office space. Half of these 17 towers will be demolished and reconstructed by 2013 (perhaps one or two will be merely refurbished and not demolished, such as will be the case for the Axa Tower, but the vast majority should be demolished). In order to entice investors, reconstruction will be tax free. Investors will be able to reconstruct towers containing up to 40,000 m² (430,000 sq. ft) more office space than the tower they demolish, but extra office space won't be tax free. In other words, if an investor demolishes, say, the 110 m (361 ft) Tour Aurore which currently contains 27,000 m² (290,000 sq. ft) of office space, then this investor is allowed to build on the now empty lot (after demolition) a tower containing up to 67,000 m² (720,000 sq. ft) of office space. This would mean replacing a 34-floor tower (Tour Aurore) with approximately a 50-floor tower. Height increase: 110 m (361 ft) for the current tower to approximately 200 m. (650 ft) for the reconstructed tower, assuming 4 meters per floor. On that new tower, 27,000 m² would be tax free, and the developer would pay taxes only for the remaining 40,000 m². This tower is just one example of what's going to happen.

Here I come to the second important thing to note. The initial deadline, 2015, was changed to 2013. This basically means that in the short space of 7 years, 8 to 9 old towers (half of the 17) will be demolished, 8 to 9 new skyscrapers will be built to replace them, and an unknown number of new skyscrapers containing 300,000 m² (3.2 million sq. ft) will be built on currently empty lots. This looks as very ambitious to me, and I don't know if they can meet the deadline, but the minister looked quite confident. The minister even turned towards the director of La Défense Authority and said that the government approved a MINIMUM of half of the 17 old towers reconstructed by 2013, but if they can do more than half, then let's do it. In order to meet the deadline, it basically means that around 2010 La Défense would have to be a giant construction site with about 10 skyscrapers u/c at the same time. We'll see. Then, from what I understand, there will be a new development project in 2013 (perhaps covering 2013-2020) which will see the demolition and reconstruction of the remaining old towers.

Now let's come to what some of you were awaiting most... the supertalls. Here, I'm afraid you'll be disappointed, because no details were revealed. As I said, it was a technical announcement, not a showy display. There are lots of rumors and talks, so I will try to piece things together the best I can. Initially (last December), it was announced that among the new skyscrapers there would be a 400 m (1,300 ft) and a 300 m (1,000 ft) skyscraper. The 400 m skyscraper was labeled "iconic tower" (in French: "tour signal") and was supposed to make La Défense instantly recognizable in the world. On Tuesday, one of the two ministers only extremely briefly mentioned the "tour signal" at the end of his speech. Here is the full translation of what he said: "Finally, I believe like Nicolas Sarkozy that we must make a strong show of La Défense's comeback among the major international urban places; and that's the project of a "tour signal" which could be a bold architect statement but also make sense in terms of sustainable development. I believe that such a project would symbolize a new step for La Défense." And that's it! The ministers didn't say more than that.

There have, however, been several hints that the 400 m (1,300 ft) tower is cancelled, at least for now. In a press interview on Monday (the day before the press conference), the same minister said: "We also want to make a new architectural statement which would be a sort of symbol of La Défense's revival. It will be a tower, even though the idea of a 400m-tall building, which was put forward for a time, should not be kept." As recently as mid-June, the director of La Défense Authority was still talking of a 400 m tower. In mid-June also, one forumer working in a famous architect firm in Chicago had this to say about the La Défense supertalls: "I have seen what one of these buildings will look like. It is pretty awesome, and really tall. Two people that sit near me in the office are working on building the presentation models of it." Yet a few weeks ago one French forumer making models for architect firms said that the architects had to scale down their projects due to people "in the higher spheres" who were opposed to a tower taller than the Eiffel Tower. Now the minister seems to confirm that the "tour signal" should not be 400 m. tall.

Information is quite sparse and contradictory, but this is how I can piece things together (read message #221 above for a list of the "actors" at play): apparently the 400 m. supertall was the victim of political feud in the government between the Sarkozy people on the one side, and the Chirac people on the other side. The two have been fighting hard each other for several years already. Sarkozy and Bled wanted a 400 m supertall to show the new dynamism of France and Paris, and also to boost a political career (Sarkozy) and retire with honors (Bled). My understanding is that Chirac opposed the 400 m. supertall because: a- he wanted to trip Sarkozy up, and b- he's a conservative, wary of protests, and so he didn't want the tower to be taller than the Eiffel Tower. Because Chirac is the president, Sarkozy couldn't oppose him. So the 400 m tower was cancelled. However, remember that France is currently in an election year (elections are due in May next year when Chirac leaves office for good), so everything is a bit in a state of flux. If Sarkozy is elected president next year, it is possible that the 400 m. tower will come back to the fore. On the other hand, if the socialist candidate is elected, then it is possible that the whole La Défense 2013 project will be scrapped altogether. The socialist president of the Greater Paris region said he was opposed to the La Défense 2013 project, arguing that office space should be developed in the eastern suburbs of Paris, not in the wealthy western suburbs where La Défense is located. Most socialists sitting in the local councils surrounding La Défense are also opposed to the project. So at this point it's hard to know what will happen. A new socialist president of France may not necessarily listen to the anti-growth socialists of Greater Paris, but then he (or she) may. I think we have to wait until the middle of next year to know for sure what will happen. Again, if Sarkozy is elected, I wouldn't be surprised if the 400 m. supertall is finally approved and built.

In any case, at the moment, the so-called "tour signal" is not cancelled, it's simply that its height was reduced. Now how tall will it be? Only a handful of people know. If Chirac opposed the 400 m tower because he didn't want it to be taller than the Eiffel Tower, then the "tour signal" should be less than 324 m (1058 ft) tall, which is the height of the Eiffel Tower (including the antenna). Several clues suggest that the "tour signal" currently in the pipeline would hover around 300 m (1,000 ft). In particular, French architect Manuelle Gautrand said on her website that she's working on a 300 m. iconic tower for La Défense. This is all we know for now. Initially, renderings were due to be released by the end of September, but now that they forced the architects to reduce the height of their projects, I don't know if we'll have the renderings by the end of September.

Now concerning the new skyscrapers containing 300,000 m² (3.2 million sq. ft) which will be built on currently empty lots, we don't know much about these yet. One of the local councils neighboring La Défense revealed that there would be three such skyscrapers. This information is not confirmed. If they are correct, though, that would mean each skyscraper would contain on average 100,000 m² (1.1 million sq. ft) of office space. It is my understanding that the "tour signal" would be one of these three skyscrapers. The Minister of Transportation and Public Works also announced on Tuesday that his ministry will build a skyscraper in La Défense containing 80,000 m² (860,000 sq. ft) of office space to house all the departments of the ministry. It is not known whether these 80,000 m² are part of the 300,000 m² mentioned above, or are extra office space. If they are included in the 300,000 m², then that means we would have a 80,000 m² skyscraper for the ministry, and two skyscrapers with on average 110,000 m² of office space each, one of these two being the "tour signal". To help understand these figures, the 310 m (1,018 ft) U.S. Bank Tower in downtown Los Angeles contains 121,167 m² (1.3 million sq. ft) of office space, so we're not talking small skyscrapers here.

It should be noted that the ministers insisted all new skyscrapers will have original designs departing from the traditional boxy style of skyscrapers in La Défense. We can thus expect to see a completely different La Défense by 2013, with around 12 recently built skyscrapers contrasting with the style of the current skyscrapers.

There were other things announced, such as the construction of a large congress hall for shareholder meetings, but I won't detail these as they are not skyscrapers.

Last but not least, let's remember that all this concerns only La Défense. Let's not forget that there are also skyscraper projects in Levallois-Perret, Issy-les-Moulineaux, Neuilly-sur-Seine, Saint-Denis, Saint-Ouen, and Bagnolet (see map in message #176). We should learn more about these in the coming months.
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Old July 29th, 2006, 10:58 PM   #265
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Thanks for all these infos brisavoine!
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Old July 29th, 2006, 11:17 PM   #266
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For those who got lost in the lengthy message, here's a brief digest of the French government's decisions for La Défense as announced on Tuesday.

In the seven years from 2006 to 2013:
  • 8 or 9 old towers containing 325,000 m² (3.5 million sq. ft) of office space will be demolished
  • 8 or 9 skyscrapers containing 475,000 m² (5.1 million sq. ft) of office space will be built to replace the 8 or 9 demolished towers. According to the square footage, it's reasonable to assume that these 8 or 9 new skyscrapers should be between 150 m. (500 ft) and 250 m. (800 ft) tall.
  • a so-called "iconic tower" (in French: "tour signal) will be built. Its height may be 300 m. (1,000 ft). The idea of a 400 m. (1,300 ft) tower was abandoned for the moment. It may come back after the presidential election in May 2007.
  • a 80,000 m² (860,000 sq. ft) skyscraper will be built to house the Ministry of Transportation and Public Works. It seems reasonable to assume height will be around 200 m (650 ft).
  • about 3 skyscrapers containing 300,000 m² (3.2 million sq. ft) of office space will be built on currently empty lots. It seems the "tour signal" will be one these three. It is not known whether the Ministry of Transportation and Public Works skyscraper will be one of these three or whether it's an extra one. On average, each of these three skyscrapers should contain almost as much office space as the 310 m (1,018 ft) U.S. Bank Tower in downtown Los Angeles.
  • all new ca. 12 skyscrapers will have designs departing from the traditional boxy shape of skyscrapers at La Défense

Last edited by brisavoine; August 16th, 2006 at 06:42 PM.
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Old July 30th, 2006, 12:31 AM   #267
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brisavoine
  • a so-called "iconic tower" (in French: "tour signal) will be built. Its height may be 300 m. (1,000 ft). The idea of a 400 m. (1,300 ft) tower was abandoned for the moment. It may come back after the presidential election in May 2007.
Why ?

Do they need the "specific presidential approval" to build a skyscraper?


edit: sorry I didn't read the paragraph concerning the ambitions of candidate Sarkozy for "La Défense"...
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Old July 30th, 2006, 04:21 AM   #268
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Il like Paris,
I like La Défense.
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Old July 30th, 2006, 11:29 AM   #269
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jason poon
Il like Paris,
I like La Défense.
J`aime aussi Paris et La Défense
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Old July 31st, 2006, 04:04 PM   #270
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Now that we had the official approval from the French government for La Défense project, and after months of news from other local councils, I think it is time to make an updated general summary of skyscrapers u/c or planned in the Paris area, preceded by the number of skyscrapers already built, for perspective. Only towers taller than 150 m (492 ft) are listed.

As of the end of July 2006:

*12 skyscrapers above 150 m (492 ft) in La Défense and city proper: already built (note: the figure does not include Eiffel Tower)

*two 180 m (590 ft) skyscrapers in La Défense: under construction (due to be completed in 2007)

*two 165 m (541 ft) skyscrapers in Levallois-Perret: approved (construction due to start this summer and to be completed and opened by June 2009)

*renovation of the 159 m (522 ft) Axa Tower in La Défense due to be turned into a 225 m (738 ft) skyscraper (perhaps 275m/902ft with its antenna): approved (renovation starts in 2007 and should be completed by 2009)

*one so-called "tour signal" ("iconic tower") in La Défense. Height should be around 300 m (1,000 ft). 400 m (1,300 ft) height abandoned for now. May rebound after the presidential election in May 2007. Status: approved (architect contest launched, renderings due perhaps as early as this coming October)

*one 80,000 m² (860,000 sq. ft) skyscraper in La Défense for the Ministry of Transportation and Public Works. Height should be around 200 m (650 ft). Status: approved (due to be completed and opened by 2009-2010)

*around three skyscrapers in La Défense containing 300,000 m² (3.2 million sq. ft) of office space. The "tour signal" may be one of these three skyscrapers, and the ministry skyscraper may not, but this is not known for sure. Each of these three skyscrapers will contain on average almost as much office space as the 310 m (1,018 ft) U.S. Bank Tower in downtown Los Angeles. Status: approved (due to be completed and opened by 2013)

*8 or 9 skyscrapers containing 475,000 m² (5.1 million sq. ft) of office space to be built in La Défense in replacement of 8 or 9 old towers to be demolished. Heights should be between 150 m (500 ft) and 250 m (800 ft). Status: approved (due to be completed and opened by 2013)

*two 180 m (590 ft) skyscrapers in Issy-les-Moulineaux: proposed (approval due by the end of this year)

*one so-called Hypergreen Tower, 246 m (807 ft) tall, in Issy-les-Moulineaux: proposed (approval due by the end of this year)

*two 160 m (525 ft) skyscrapers in Neuilly-sur-Seine: proposed

*local council in Saint-Denis let it know it's planning skyscrapers in the new business district built near the Stade de France

*local council in Bagnolet let it know it's planning skyscrapers along the Périphérique freeway

*local council in Saint-Ouen let it know it's planning skyscrapers

By 2013, when all skyscrapers are completed, Greater Paris will have between 27 and 35 skyscrapers above 150 m (492 ft) (not counting possible skyscrapers in Saint-Denis, Bagnolet, and Saint-Ouen).

I think with this impressive list it's undeniable Paris is right there on top with the world cities building most skyscrapers at the moment. The coming months and years should be quite exciting, as more renderings are made public and projects take shape. Stay tuned.

Last edited by brisavoine; July 31st, 2006 at 04:11 PM.
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Old July 31st, 2006, 06:52 PM   #271
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Good news.
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Old July 31st, 2006, 07:00 PM   #272
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wjfox2002
In English, please.
sinon ?
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Old August 2nd, 2006, 03:17 PM   #273
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Fresh news from Issy-les-Moulineaux gathered on the French forum. An architect contest for the two 180 m (590 ft) skyscrapers will be launched in 2007. The two skyscrapers look set to start construction in 2008. As for the 246 m (807 ft) Hypergreen Tower, the mayor of Issy-les-Moulineaux confirmed that he wants to build it. The Hypergreen Tower would house the headquarters of France Telecom. Final decision will rest with France Telecom, and we should find out what they decide by the end of this year.

So the Issy-les-Moulineaux projects look more and more likely to become real...

Here are views of the Hypergreen Tower, for those who missed them in previous posts.







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Old August 11th, 2006, 08:32 PM   #274
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In an interview in the reference newspaper Le Monde today, French architect Manuelle Gautrand confirmed that she's working on a 300 m (1,000 ft) skyscraper for La Défense. In the interview, she said: "When I devise a skyscraper, I feel like I'm doing something not only for La Défense but also for the larger Paris metro area, where there isn't enough skyscrapers."

She complained that politicians in France and in Paris are too conservative and are afraid of bold new projects. She said that Paris is lagging behind other cities in terms of highrise architecture, in particular London which has transformed itself whereas Paris refuses changes, says she. However, she believes that sooner or later a skyscraper skyline will emerge in Paris. It is "ineluctable".

Here is the full interview for those who can read French: http://www.lemonde.fr/web/article/0,...-796497,0.html.
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Old August 14th, 2006, 09:23 PM   #275
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brisavoine
In an interview in the reference newspaper Le Monde today, French architect Manuelle Gautrand confirmed that she's working on a 300 m (1,000 ft) skyscraper for La Défense. In the interview, she said: "When I devise a skyscraper, I feel like I'm doing something not only for La Défense but also for the larger Paris metro area, where there isn't enough skyscrapers."

She complained that politicians in France and in Paris are too conservative and are afraid of bold new projects. She said that Paris is lagging behind other cities in terms of highrise architecture, in particular London which has transformed itself whereas Paris refuses changes, says she. However, she believes that sooner or later a skyscraper skyline will emerge in Paris. It is "ineluctable".

Here is the full interview for those who can read French: http://www.lemonde.fr/web/article/0,...-796497,0.html.
Do most people in Paris accept her feelings and feel the same as her or not? I have heard a lot of people say they want Paris to grow upwards, but some that say they don't want large skyscrapers.
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Old August 15th, 2006, 12:28 AM   #276
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Talbot
Do most people in Paris accept her feelings and feel the same as her or not? I have heard a lot of people say they want Paris to grow upwards, but some that say they don't want large skyscrapers.
I think there's a generation gap. Older people (i.e. anyone above 40 y/o I'd say) don't want anything to change, and they don't like skyscrapers. Younger people are tired of the general conservatism that permeates all spheres of French society and they want changes. When the younger generations come to power (15-20 years from now?), things will change a lot. Until then, I don't have much hope, except if a strong-willed guy with bold ideas comes to power, which is always a possibility with the French presidential system. Time will tell.
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Old August 15th, 2006, 04:41 AM   #277
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I wonder if there will be an agreement (informal) between the UK and France to keep their towers to the 1000ft/300m level? Otherwise its a bit crazy one city trying to out do the other. Offering enormous tax breaks to office developers must be expensive for Paris - a financial incentive not offered to London developers, who in contrast must offer significant benefits/planning gain etc. such as affordable housing or infrastructure investments to London to obtain permission to construct.
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Old August 15th, 2006, 10:11 AM   #278
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Whats the point in that? It could stunt both cities growth. Abit of competition can be a good thing, it can push people to build better structures, and that helps Europe as a whole.
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Old August 15th, 2006, 11:03 AM   #279
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Black Cat
I wonder if there will be an agreement (informal) between the UK and France to keep their towers to the 1000ft/300m level? Otherwise its a bit crazy one city trying to out do the other. Offering enormous tax breaks to office developers must be expensive for Paris - a financial incentive not offered to London developers, who in contrast must offer significant benefits/planning gain etc. such as affordable housing or infrastructure investments to London to obtain permission to construct.
London & Paris are two distinct & seperate office markets- one happens in one has very little bearing in what happens in the other.

Anyway the great majority of office buildings in both London & Paris are in buildings below 10 stories so a couple of 300m towers will have little impact on their respective city office market -never mind the other cities.
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Old August 15th, 2006, 11:38 AM   #280
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It's really not "enormous tax breaks". The only "tax break" is that developpers won't have to pay the tax you theorically have to pay when you build office space when they rebuild an old tower, because the tax was paid when the initial building was built. But they'll still have to pay the tax for any additional surface added to the new building. They'll also have the right to add up to 40 000m² to the surface of the old building without having to go through the "agreement process" (which is a way for authorities in France to limit the amount of office space built).
So, basically the point is to make it easier and incentive to replace old buildings, not really cheaper. And these "tax breaks" won't even apply to 1% of the parisian office market.

Regarding London and Paris, both cities are doing great. No need to have some secret agreement between the UK and France
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