One of the most interesting landmarks in Paris is their skyscraper, known as the Tour Montparnasse. It was built back in the early 70s and it was, at first, met with some considerable skepticism. People didn't like the skyscraper and thought that it was an eyesore on Paris' skyline, especially since it was perceived to detract from the prominence of the Eiffel Tower. It ended up being such a big deal that the city banned the construction of any more skyscrapers until 2013!
Now that the Tour Montparnasse has earned a little more respect among iconic Paris landmarks, the people currently in care of the skyscraper have said that they want to make some changes to the large, brown block of a skyscraper that is the Tour Montparnasse tower. At 59 stories tall, the skyscraper is one of the 20 tallest in Europe, so it's quite large when compared to all of the other structures in the historic Montparnasse district. The tower is clearly visible from most parts of the city and greets travelers arriving at the popular Gare Montparnasse train station; one of the busiest in Paris. So, what exactly are the plans for the Tour Montparnasse refurbishment?
The Re-Invention of Tour Montparnasse
First, the current owners put together a contest in order to help redesign the way that it looks, and architects from all over the world submitted bids in hopes of being selected. The skyscraper's owners decided on a more modern look, as many residents believe the current look of the building is incredibly tacky and outdated. The new model is going to be translucent and will have a number of windows throughout the entire structure. On top of that, they want to expand the shopping area that is on the first floor.
Building on Paris' Touristic Appeal
What does this mean for Paris? One thing is that it will, hopefully, look a lot more modern and be a source of pride for Paris, instead of just an eyesore on the skyline. Increased tourism to the Montparnasse district of Paris will be another benefit; there will be more to see than just the Eiffel Tower and the art museums! Even though the project is estimated to cost $500 million, even more than that of the major Eiffel Tower makeover, it could prove to be a worthwhile investment that expands the tourism industry and bolsters the economy. If Paris gets their bid for the Olympics in 2024, then the new Tour Montparnasse may very well be a main attraction as many visitors will have the opportunity to see the new structure for the first time.
What do you think about the Tour Montparnasse refurbishment? Will newer attractions and more modern architecture increase Paris' touristic appeal?
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