Project of the week "Louvre-Lens": Local development through a strong and ambitious cultural programme
The "Louvre-Lens" museum opened its doors to the public today. The placement of the Museum of the Louvre in Lens in the Nord-Pas-De-Calais region was decided in November 2004 and constitutes a first for this area. Louvre-Lens grew from the desire of the French government to take a new step towards decentralisation and the Museum of Louvre's wish to renew its tradition of local engagement, and from the conviction of Nord-Pas-de-Calais local collectives that local development should take the form of a strong and ambitious cultural programme.
The Louvre-Lens project, which benefitted from EU co-financing to the tune of 35 million Euro – 20% of the total – is a large scale investment which comprises the museum spread over 5 buildings, exhibition spaces in three buildings – the “Galerie des Temps” or permanent exhibition, the temporary exhibition space and the glass pavilion – and the park around the museum. It responds to the desire for a high quality museum which is open to all – access to the “Galerie des Temps”.
The location of a decentralised branch of the prestigious Parisian Louvre museum on the old site of a mine in Lens is also an exceptional opportunity for economic development for this region which has been particularly affected by de-industrialisation. In addition to the 50 000 visitors expected and the 100 jobs directly created, the Museum of the Louvre in Lens will act as an accelerator for existing urban development projects and will generate new projects which will develop around the museum. In this context Euralens has been created, which is a federative projects structure for the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region.
To know more about the Louvre-Lens project:
- Région Nord-Pas-de-Calais (intermediary body)
- Site de la Préfecture de Région Nord-Pas-de- Calais (managing authority)