La Reine de la Seine
Anne Hidalgo would like to extend Greater Paris to the sea!
No, this is not a joke. The current mayor of Paris has relaunched the idea emitted in 2008 by President Nicolas Sarkozy of a Greater Paris which would go from the capital to Le Havre via Rouen.
On Tuesday, September 29th, the Grand Paris 2020 Summit was held. On this occasion, the mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, and the mayor of Le Havre, Edouard Philippe (the former Prime Minister), recalled their common desire to advance an old project that had almost fallen into oblivion…that of “a capital region” which would go “from Île-de-France to the sea.” A Grand Paris reaching from Le Havre via Rouen!
Here’s Madame Hidalgo’s pitch on BFM Paris TV.
“At the beginning, it is true that some made fun of this idea,” the Socialist mayor admitted. “This idea of Greater Paris all the way to the sea seems to me to be a vision,” she insisted. “Paris is the only large metropolis in the world that does not have access to the sea.” And after all, the Seine directly connects the capital to the port of Le Havre.
The idea was originally put forth in 2008 by President Nicolas Sarkozy, and before him by Napoleon Bonaparte, who declared in 1802 (as Jules Michelet recalls in Volume IV of his Histoire de France): “Paris, Rouen, Le Havre, one and the same city of which the Seine is the main street.”
In November 2018, Edouard Philippe imagined the project of merging three ports: Le Havre, Rouen and Paris. Without that, according to him, “we cannot have a real power in competition compared to the other big European ports.” Hervé Morin, president of the Normandy region, is against the project, and accuses Paris of wanting to transform its region into a “doormat of the Île-de-France.” On the Île-de-France side precisely, the president of the region, Valérie Pécresse, is not in favor, promising her Norman counterpart that “the Île-de-France will never have the ambition to annex our beautiful neighbor Normandy.”
Are they nuts?! It seems to me that Madame Hidalgo wants to rule all of France and all of the world. First, she’s combined districts one through four in Paris which is a kind of gerrymandering and now this! I can’t imagine the other cities giving in.
It’s time to stop, Madame. Do you think you are La Reine de la Seine? Remember what happened to her?! Off with your head!
Adrian Leeds Group®
(on the Seine)
P.S. The Alliance Française Webinar we announced a couple of weeks ago already has 10 percent more registrations than Zoom will allow, so I suggest if you already registered, you will want to arrive early to be sure to be let in! Normally, there are about 25 percent “no shows,” so if that is the case, hopefully, everyone will have a chance to participate!