Tourist buses ‘no longer welcome’ in city: Paris deputy mayor
PARIS: Paris’s deputy mayor has revealed the city is working to stop tourist buses causing “total anarchy” in the city.
Emmanuel Gregoire said the town hall is working on regulations to limit bus traffic, and would introduce parking areas outside the city.
“Buses are no longer welcome in the very heart of the city,” said Gregoire.
The deputy mayor spoke of the measure as part of a number of initiatives designed to mitigate the impact of overtourism in the French capital.
While the problem has not reached the levels of Venice or Barcelona, Gregoire believes that Parisians are wary of issues caused by overcrowding.
He emphasized that the capital is open to mass tourism, and has made great efforts to provide free public toilets, but claimed that “tourists can do what everyone else does and use public transport or switch to environmentally friendly mobility options” instead of buses.
However Gregoire acknowledged that group tours are useful for older visitors.
And while restrictions on buses may make life more difficult for tour guides, Gregoire said that they must adapt and use cycling or walking tours.
“Everyone has to adapt their work to the needs of the city,” he said.
Gregoire also raised concerns over increased housing costs, which he partly blamed on Airbnb, and claimed that crime rates in Paris were low compared to other large cities around the world.
In Venice, huge cruise ships have become a focal point for concerns about visitor numbers.
In June 2019 a cruise ship hit a tourist boat in the Giudecca canal, and locals are pushing for the ships to be banned from the area.
Overtourism is also an issue in Amsterdam, where the tourist board has decided to stop advertising in an attempt to manage the booming number of visitors.
The city has also attempted to introduce a 30-day short term rental limit on Airbnb properties, but has found itself in dispute with the world’s biggest private rental firm over its plans for more stringent rules.