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Dietmar Feichtinger Architectes, Eiffel Tower, Paris

A glass wall and landscape park: Security around the Eiffel Tower

The area reaching from the École Militaire to the Eiffel Tower at the heart of the Palais de Trocadéro grounds has become a tourist attraction per se over the past 100 years. To ensure that this remains the case despite new security measures, Dietmar Feichtinger Architectes opted for protecting the area around the landmark with highly transparent, self-supporting glass elements, thus bridging the distance between the security gates in the process. The joints between the 72.millimetre-thick panes are covered with stainless steel profiles that end just below the top edge of the three-metre-high wall. Plain stainless steel cubes containing lighting and surveillance cameras are mounted flush with the profiles. 

The barrier provides protection from the busy road alongside the Seine, and in this respect also abates the noise that used to spread unhindered over the large open space. At the same time 428 fixed, retractable bollards prevent cars from mounting the pavement at Quai Branly and Avenue Gustave Eiffel.

Within the newly-enclosed space the landscaped garden from the 1887 World’s Fair has been returned to its original state by Vogt Landscape Architects; at the same time, small-scale viewlines in the park have been reactivated and 67 new trees have been planted. In contrast to the open space below the Eiffel Tower, the park is surrounded by a Corten steel fence, shaped to reference the Tower; at 3.24 metres high it is exactly one hundredth of the height of the structure on which it is modelled. Now all visitors first pass through the park in an introductory experience. Six transparent security checkpoints with glass roofs in a slender design provide controlled access, while glass revolving door exits are integrated into the oval outer contours of the park. 

All the structures installed by Dietmar Feichtinger Architectes can be completely dismantled. The security concept for the area around the historical structure will be reconsidered by the Paris Senate and the police in four years’ time.  

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