Before and During

There is a lot of work going on in the area around our apartment. A tramway that will circle Paris is being built on the street nearest us and it is a huge mess with giant holes being dug and enormous pipes being laid. They also dug deep tunnels down each street, including ours, looking like it was something electrical being done. Not only that, but the telephone company is digging ditches along side all the buildings on every street in our neighborhood for what I guess is new technology.
There is an old abandoned railroad track a few blocks from us. I don’t know if they will ever do something neat with it like the elevated Prominade with walking paths and gardens. Underneath it, at a corner and naturally a block from our apartment, was what I guess was an old storage space, fenced in and locked, that somehow a homeless man was able to make a living space for himself. He put up big sheets of wood for privacy, was able to lock it, and lived there for as long as I have been here. You couldn’t see all that he was doing in there except I could see a bed and a chair. He was a talkitive, friendly guy who seemed to spend a lot of time drinking. This time when we returned he was gone. We don’t know if he died or not, but suddenly the sheets of wood were gone and there had been some attempt to clean out the area. I was amazed at all of the junk there and the thousands of beer cans. What a mess. Nobody has finished cleaning it. I think they will need a dump trunk to get all of the stuff out of the area. Maurice sent an email to the mairie asking for something to be done and they wrote that it isn’t their problem but that of the company running the trains. I don’t know when or if it will ever get cleaned up. They did put up a new door so I guess it won’t be taken over again by anyone.
Nation, a big square not too far from where I live is undergoing some huge renovations of the two columns found there, built as a place to collect taxes centuries ago. A few years ago they put some tall fences around the two columns and then nothing as far as I could see was done. When we returned to Paris this year we found scaffolding had been put up and that the two statues usually on top and the top two thirds of the column had been taken down. There is a long explanation on one of the fences telling all that will be done, including bronzing the statues of Phillip II and Louis IX. I have a feeling that it will be years until the whole thing is finished. A few photos showing before and during. I’m looking forward to taking the after photos one day.



6 thoughts to “Before and During”

  1. Isn’t it amazing the amount of works (travaux) going on in this city? Within 2 blocks of me, there are 2 major private construction projects: one was an old La Poste office torn down to make way for a new apartment building (perhaps with some ground-floor shop space), and the other is a building that was practically falling down but was designated “historical” so they have to preserve the front facade of the building even though they will gut the rest and build something else. Can’t wait until THAT is done as it was not only an eye-sore but it’s where my step-daughter got mugged for 20 euros last year by 4 boys lurking in the shadows (wasn’t even late at night, 7pm! And she wasn’t hurt, just pissed off at it.) So having a populated building with some lighting will be a safety improvement for the neighborhood.

  2. I can see you are in for some noisey and messy times Linda.
    Will the trams be like the ones we have in our City of Melbourne?
    A tram in Paris would be a great idea but – you do need space for them.
    Shall be interesting what happens!

  3. I hope the scaffolding will not be there for long! There are a lot of works going on these days, aren’t there. The one that was a pain for us was that Jaurés M° L2 was closed from October 1 to December 29, which seemed an eternity, lol. It’s back now, which is good, but there are a lot of other things going on in the city, aren’t there.

    That was curious about the homeless man! I always wonder what has become of people in those kinds of situations.

    Stay warm!

  4. Not nice with this amount of work going on so close. Hope the finished project will benefit you.

    We are in our fourth week of snow and is snowed again today.

    The toilet is fun as long as one is not inclined to dizziness!

  5. They’re putting in a tramway in Rabat too. Makes the taxi drivers livid. Also it has thoroughly fouled what was already pretty foul traffic.
    The homeless guy sounds like the eccentric in that children’s book “Les Trois Crimes d’Annabus” or whatever it was. Have you read it?

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