Paris hasn’t built a skyscraper since the early 1970s. Politicians put a stop to it. They had to. Somehow, the city of Gustave Eiffel forgot how to make tall structures beautiful.
An architectural winning streak of seven centuries ended in 1973 with the completion of Montparnasse Tower, the 210-metre monolith designed by Eugène Beaudouin, Urbain Cassan, and Louis Hoym de Marien. The brown steel-and-glass building glowered over the otherwise grey-and-white 15th arrondissement like the Eye of Sauron. It was so loathed that local authorities instituted a moratorium on structures taller than seven stories within the city core.
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