There’s no love lost between Paris and the tourists who leave padlocks, famously called “love locks,” on the city’s Pont des Arts bridge.
The Paris City Council announced plans to dismantle the padlocks, which are meant to signify eternal love, starting this Monday. In recent years, tourists have signed the locks with their initials and locked them on the metal grills on the bridge’s sides, but many locals consider them to be eyesores. Plexiglass panels will eventually replace the grills.
“Hundreds of thousands of locks are attached to certain bridges around Paris,” the city council said, according to The Local. “This phenomenon generates two problems: a lasting degradation of the heritage of Paris and also a risk to the safety of visitors, Parisians and tourists.”
Last summer, a chunk of the Pont des Arts‘ fencing fell off under their weight.
The bridge, which overlooks the Eiffel Tower, will be closed for one week in June while the padlocks are removed. Currently, the Pont des Arts is covered with graffiti-covered plywood panels, but they will be replaced with artwork from international artists, according to the No Love Locks campaign. Then in October, glass panels will be installed on both the Pont des Arts and the Pont de l’Archevêché, another bridge crossing the Seine river.
“Say goodbye to love locks on the Pont des Arts!” No Lock Locks, which aims to rid Paris’ historic bridges of the padlocks, said in a Facebook post on Friday. “Sorry, tourists, no more vandalizing our city. Finally, Paris is taking a definitive stand against ‘love locks.'”
Lisa Anselmo and Lisa Taylor Huff, two expats living in Paris, launched No Love Locks last year. Anselmo told Mashable in a previous interview that their campaign is “really all about communicating responsible tourism.”
Paris Deputy Mayor Bruno Julliard is expected to hold a press conference about the love locks’ removal on Monday.
The report is first appeared on Mashable