The police proceeded, Wednesday, January 13, to the evacuation of a room in Petit Cambodge illegally occupied by anti-gentrification activists. This intervention follows a court ruling issued on January 4 by the Paris court which ordered the occupants to vacate the premises within 48 hours. Rented by the managers of Petit Cambodge, this room located at the crossroads of avenue Claude-Vellefaux and rue Jean-et-Marie-Moinon, in the 10e Parisian district, had been squatted since November 14, 2020. The restaurateurs (who have two other establishments in the district, rue Alibert and rue Beaurepaire) had filed a complaint three days later for “home invasion” and an investigation had been opened by the Paris prosecutor’s office in the process.
For eight weeks, this room was occupied by a group called “the rebels of the Place Sainte-Marthe”, denouncing the gentrification of the neighborhood and defending ” a radical ecology in Paris », according to a press release. A demonstration in line with the camp installed on the Place Sainte-Marthe, at the end of September, at the initiative of Youth For Climate and of Green disobedience Paris. These associations, supposedly close to the anarchist movement, also occupied the squat, as did feminist and anti-racist collectives. Beyond the local area of Petit Cambodge, it is the transformation of the entire district, a former working-class city, that is causing debate. In January 2020, local artisans and artists demonstrated following the arrival of a new lessor, the investment company Edmond Coignet, which raised concerns an increase in rents.
Horror of the Void
The local Petit Cambodge, it belongs to Siemp, social landlord of the city of Paris. Rented since December 2015 for nearly 5,000 euros per month, it is still empty. What to provoke the anger of associations. Simon October, leader of Petit Cambodge, explains that his annex project was delayed due to a difficult restart, in 2016, after the attacks of November 13, 2015, and that he was challenged for the first time before to be validated in 2018. The brand hoped to open its third address in early 2020, but the Covid-19 epidemic has caused a new postponement. After 1 million euros of investment, Simon October has therefore not yet been able to present his “Innovative and social project” to the general public. He estimates that he still has two months of work left if “A new very strict confinement does not complicate matters yet”.
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