Paris Reinstates Historic Height Limits as Part of its New Bioclimatic Local Urban Plan

Paris’ reinstated height limits, lowering height limits allowed in 2010, are part of Mayor Anne Hidalgo’s recently released Bioclimatic Local Urban Plan.

2 minute read

June 25, 2023, 5:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


A conceptual rendering of the planned Tour Triangle building sticks above the Paris skyline, with the Eiffel Tower in the distance.

A rendering of the Tour Triangle high-rise, which is the cause of the controversy. | Herzog & de Meuron /

Paris has reimposed a height limit for new buildings in the city of height of 37 meters, more 12 stories, according to an article in a French language publication 20 Minutes.

The height limit redux “reinstates the same Parisian planning law that was introduced in 1977 following the construction of Tour Montparnasse, a 210-metre-tall office tower by architects Eugène Beaudouin, Urbain Cassan and Louis Hoym de Marien that was also highly contested,” according to an article by Lizzie Crook for Dezeen.

In 2010, former Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoë raised the height limit to 180 meters for office buildings and 50 meters for housing developments.

This time, the height limit responds to “the controversial construction of Tour Triangle tower designed by Swiss studio Herzog & de Meuron,” according to Crook, who adds that the reinstated height limit is considered a component of current Mayor Anne Hidalgo’s Local Bioclimatic Urban Plan, unveiled earlier in June, which is aimed at reducing Paris’ carbon emissions.

According to an article on Sortir Paris, the Bioclamatic Urban Plan has three primary focuses, including development limitations that install an urban growth boundary and ambitious goals for social housing: 

  • “Limiting new construction: No new building may exceed 37 meters in height. The area around the ring road will be protected, with no construction allowed within a 25-metre zone around it, barring specific exceptions.
  • “More green space: The plan calls for the development of 300 hectares of additional green space by 2040. At the same time, the city is committed to planting 170,000 trees by 2026.”
  • “Increase in social housing: The aim is to achieve 30% social housing by 2035. In certain zones, new projects over 500m2 will have to include at least 50% social housing.”

Tuesday, June 6, 2023 in Dezeen

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