Paris OKs disputed plan to transform highway into walkway
PARIS (AP) — The Paris City Council has approved a controversial plan to transform a stretch of highway that runs along the Seine River through central Paris into a pedestrian-only zone.
The plan approved Monday is part of Mayor Anne Hidalgo’s push to fight Paris’ exceptionally high pollution. The Socialist-led council passed the measure amid opposition from conservatives, who argue it will worsen city traffic and disproportionately hurt working class commuters.
Hidalgo hailed the decision as “historic” and said it would eliminate an urban highway that she argues has no place in the center of a modern metropolis.
Under the plan, 3.3 kilometers (2 miles) of road from the Tuileries Garden toward the Bastille neighborhood will be closed down. Paris authorities already have converted a highway along the Left Bank for pedestrian use.