Paris on ‘Locks Down’: Over 700 000 love locks removed from Pont des Arts


UPDATE: The city council’s first deputy, Bruno Julliard, came up with a brilliant idea: they’re going to sell the locks, and they’re going to use the proceeds to help with Paris’s growing refugee population-What do you think of this?  I personally think it’s a beautiful idea. If I had put a lock on the bridge, I would be happy to know that it would now be used to help someone in some way.  It’s a very poetic (and delightfully French) way to find a place for the locks and to spread the love.

While romantic tourists from around the world gasped in horror, many Parisians and historians sighed in relief as some 700 000 love locks were taken down from the Pont des Arts Bridge in Paris on June 1st, 2015.

The weight of the hundreds of thousands of locks-an accumulation of several years- had started to take a toll on the historic landmark.

Weighing around 45 tons in total, the locks were considered too much of a burden and were all removed yesterday. Plexiglass will be installed in their place, allowing for clear views of the Seine River.

While the clingy locks feel the hot sting of rejection, and the river remains all keyed up, the bridge, after nearly 10 years must feel a little less shackled.

Vive l’amour sans cadenas

The practice of ‘love locking’-writing messages or initials on padlocks, affixing them to bridges or other structures and throwing away the key to symbolize unbreakable love-is nothing new.  Grouping thousands of them together however has only been a trend for a little over a decade.  Many attribute the love lock fad to an Italian novel (later made into a film) called ‘I Want You’.

While the idea is charming, and one can only imagine all the stories that go along with the locks, the damage they can do to historical structures is a definite cause for concern.

It is not known what will be done with the locks.  It would be nice if they could be re-installed somewhere else in the city of love, where their stories and messages can live on.

What do you think the city should do with all of the jilted love locks?


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