Paris is planning to build a bullet-proof protective barrier around the base of the Eiffel Tower to provide protection against terror attacks, according to a source in the mayor’s office.
The famous landmark, which gets around 7 million visitors each year, already has protective metal fencing that was erected around its base last year for the Euro 2016 soccer championships last summer.
The cost of the 8 foot-high protective barrier to replace the temporary barrier would be 20 million euros.
“Sadly, the risk of terrorism hasn’t gone away,” deputy mayor Jean-François Martins said at a Paris press conference. “It’s not a wall, it’s an aesthetic perimeter.”
“We have three aims: improve the look, make access easier and strengthen the protection of visitors and staff,” he added. The barrier will also have to be able to stop bullets and vehicles.
The perimeter will include the space under the tower, as well as two ponds on either side of it, an area roughly 200 by 300 meters.
Work on the barrier is set to start in the fall, but first the project must get approval by a historic sites commission and then by the environment ministry.