Parisian Raphaëlle Remy-Leleu, 27, is head of the Europe Ecologie les Verts list for Paris Center on the list led by David Belliard. An activist, she led union, feminist and progressive struggles. We shared a coffee with her in the Marais, at Barricou.

Your main criticism of the outgoing team?
Some things have not gone fast enough, others not far enough on ecological issues; still others are not very consistent.

Proclaiming oneself an ecologist in a city like Paris, which must adapt to its future, is not consistent with all the major unconcerted projects undertaken by the town hall, such as the redevelopment of the Gare du Nord [transformed into a shopping center], the Triangle tower in the 15th or the ZAC Bercy Charenton and its six towers.

In the outgoing majority, in which we participated, too many things did not seem to fit together, between words and actions. But time is running out. There is an emergency in the face of climate change. We need to act quickly to face what will happen to us in the next ten, fifteen years.

What are the successes of the outgoing municipality?
The bicycle plan, because it was necessary to reinvent mobility in Paris, relieve congestion in public spaces and reduce pollution. The two-way cycle path on rue de Rivoli is a success. However, the cycling plan has only been 50% implemented. We must accelerate, while sticking to the commitments made.

Your key proposals for Paris Center?
We must stop the increase in rents. We are ready to block them. Paris-Centre must become livable again for the people who live there. In five years, high rents have pushed 60.000 people out of Paris.

Airbnb, which is in a predatory strategy, particularly in Paris-Centre, poses a big problem. This system causes nuisance (starting with the passing of wheeled suitcases), causes property prices to rise and ultimately deprives families, single people and students of access to housing. It is now impossible to find a studio for less than €1 per month!

Because of Airbnb, many buildings are underpopulated. Did you know that the Parisian rental record holder Airbnb has 637 rental accommodations?
Ecologie-Paris does not want to ban Airbnb – in fact the city does not have the authority to do so. On the other hand, we want to impose limits, safeguards and ensure that we do not exceed a number of 45 nights per year. We also want to strengthen the means of control. Only around thirty agents from the City of Paris are currently dedicated to controlling Airbnbs. It is insufficient.

Regarding pedestrianization, we want to develop it but in a concerted manner, particularly with traders.

In addition, it is essential to encourage the establishment of local businesses in Paris Center, to maintain those that exist and to help their development. This involves, for example, the pre-emption of commercial premises, as is already done. One of the roles of the town hall is to preserve the soul of Paris.

Text: Katia Barillot
Photos: ©Anaïs Costet

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