Architect 'humbled' by Paris airport collapse

28th May 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, May 28 (AFP) - Architect Paul Andreu said Friday he was at a loss to explain how a part of his new terminal at Charles de Gaulle airport collapsed on Sunday, killing four people.

PARIS, May 28 (AFP) - Architect Paul Andreu said Friday he was at a loss to explain how a part of his new terminal at Charles de Gaulle airport collapsed on Sunday, killing four people.

In his first extensive interviews in the French press, Andreu said he did not think he had made any error in designing the EUR 750 million (USD 900 million) building, "but an accident such as this imposes a certain level of modesty."

"I have to explain to the public that for the moment we simply do not know (the cause). Putting forward hypotheses ignores the seriousness of what happened," he told Le Figaro newspaper.

"As a lot of people have said, the probability is that there it is a conjunction of several factors. It is all scientific, material, so it will be revealed," he told Liberation.

Andreu, 65, who has designed all the terminals at the 30-year old airport, said there was nothing revolutionary about terminal 2E, whose departure area consists of a 650-metre concrete tube, surrounded by a coating of glass.

"Nothing is further from my ideas than to flirt with the limits of what is possible and put anything in danger.

"People say that if we just kept it simple, ordinary, cheap, if we weren't so proud, in short if we didn't practice architecture, then there would be no problems and no-one would be dead. As if accidents were linked to the quality of the architecture! That makes no sense," he said.

"It is a magnificent building which made many people happy before, it is true, killing four. I want to keep in mind both those facts," he said.

© AFP

Subject: French news

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