Nantes refuses to allow newly-legal pavement adverts

Adverts similar to this one from the USA are now legal in three cities, but Nantes has refused their introduction

The city of Nantes has announced that it will not allow temporary adverts to be placed on its pavements, despite the practice having been legal since Christmas Day this year.

Since Monday, Nantes, Bordeaux and Lyon have legally been allowed to use the street-based “guerrilla” advertising, after a decree was published in the Journal Officiel as part in an 18-month experiment on pavement advertising.

According to the new rules, pavement advertisements must be applied using a stencil, with water-based, non-slip, biodegradable chalk or paints, and must disappear naturally - or be removed - within 10 days. They must be less than 2.50m² in size, and cannot appear closer than 80m apart.

The adverts were to form part of an 18-month study on their effectiveness, and into whether putting signs and images on the floor would increase falls or accidents around the advertising sites.

However, Nantes has now hit back at the legalisation, saying on December 28 that it would lead to “useless visual pollution”, reported newspaper Le Monde.

The city has recently stated its desire to “reduce the density of [advert] signs in public spaces” and to boost instead “the historical and national assets of its town centre”, and reportedly saw the new legalisation as a threat to this aim.

The city stated: “[Nantes] wishes to align itself with our codes of the road and of the environment, and will refuse any request to mark the floor”. Ministers in charge of this aspect of town management will be notified, it added.

Nantes is not the only city to question the legalisation of the practice in its town. Bordeaux also heavily criticised the move - but has not yet formally refused it - with a statement saying: “[This decision was taken] without any of the elected ministers in the town of Bordeaux or the Bordeaux Métropole having been consulted or informed at any time.”

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