Monday, May 23

Paris: the end of the “large pig pens” at the foot of the capital’s trees

Deemed aesthetically unsatisfactory by the first deputy to the city of Paris, Emmanuel Grégoire, the feet of Parisian trees will be reviewed. No more “large pig pens” warns the elected official, who presented this Tuesday, January 18 his “new doctrine” in order to improve the development and maintenance of Parisian public space.

“There are nearly 100,000 avenue trees in Paris, but each year 1.5% of them have to be cut down because they are either sick or at the end of their life cycle. In total, that makes 1,500 feet of trees in renewal”, explains Emmanuel Grégoire, whose “new strategy in terms of tree feet” will now apply when it is necessary to cut and then replant a tree in the city.

Before, it was a question of removing the grid which was at the foot of the tree in order to remove the dead tree, then to create a pit of 3 meters by 3, and more than one meter deep in order to renew the earth, before planting a mature stump so that a young tree can grow there. A process that lasts “between 2 and 3 years”, during which the feet of trees become “large pig pens”, deplores the elected official, who admits that this method was “not aesthetically satisfactory”.

Grass paving around young trees

From now on, “we are going to come back to a principle of grass paving” carried out around the tree, announces the first deputy, who explains that this arrangement will be temporary but will allow, while the young growth is anchored to the ground, “to the earth to settle” while “facilitating the maintenance” of the place.

At the end of these 3 years, a final development will be carried out with two options: that of the restoration of the base of the tree in the respect of the linear with the Davioud grid or that of the withdrawal of the paving stones but with the maintenance of a debited strip, to connect several tree stands together and thus create a vegetated path (see above).

A new policy to which the municipality has decided to devote 12.5 million euros “in the next 3 years”, which marks the end of the “Permit to revegetate”. Launched in 2015, it allowed Parisians to flower the feet of trees and to garden in the ground around trees where the bitumen had been removed. An operation which – except in too few places – did not meet with the expected success and resulted in a feeling of poor maintenance.

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