French city Grenoble bans advertising in favour of trees

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Grenoble is the first European city to renounce the revenue from billboards in public spaces – Grenoble earned some 645,000 euros in 2014 – in favour of making the city a greener space for residents.

“It’s time to move forward in making Grenoble a more gentle and creative city,” said the city’s Green Party Mayor Eric Piolle, who campaigned for office in early 2014 with a promise to remove advertising from Grenoble. “We want a city which is less aggressive and less stressful to live in, that can carve out its own identity. Freeing Grenoble of advertising billboards is a step in this direction.”

Mayor Piolle aims for a green and sustainable city without advertising billboards. At the same time, the city will promote public transportation and will build new cycle paths.

Between January and April 2015, some 326 advertising panels will be taken down as JCDecaux’s contract comes to an end. The removed billboards will be replaced by young trees and by free community notice boards.