If the historic clean-up currently going on in Paris is a success, the city will soon see people swimming and diving into the River Seine again.
For over 100 years, swimming in the Seine was banned because of the water’s pollution.
The regeneration project, costing $1.6 billion has wildly been hailed as successful and the timing is great because there’s only one year to go before Paris hosts the Summer Olympics.
There are three Olympic and Paralympic events to be held in the Seine namely triathlon, marathon swimming and Para-triathlon.
By 2025, there will also be three open-air swimming areas with access granted to the public from the quayside.
Pierre Rabadan, the deputy mayor of Paris in charge of the Olympics said it’s their contribution for the future.
“When people see athletes swimming in the Seine with no health problems, they’ll be confident themselves to start going back in the Seine.”
Sewerage systems have also been to blame with 19th century systems built to use the Seine as an outlet for wastewater, according to Samuel Colin-Canivez, chief engineer for sanitation at Paris city hall.
“Up to now the Seine has been the safety valve for the sewage system. If we didn’t occasionally allow wastewater into the river, it would have backed up into people’s homes.”
Image credit: The Times