The city of Paris brings together Parisians online around the challenges of “quick commerce”

The delivery of shopping or meals at home in a very short time; “quick commerce” has been booming in Paris and the inner suburbs since the start of the health crisis. To the chagrin of some residents who complain of new nuisances.

Objective: pedagogy. More than 150 people were invited on Friday March 25 for a videoconference devoted to “quick trade issues” in Paris. An initiative of the City whose objective was to inform Parisians about this practice which has exploded since the beginning of the health crisis, to set out the remedies available to the City and local residents in the event of questionable installation and listen to the complaints of local residents.

As a reminder: “quick commerce” refers to this practice of fast home delivery of groceries from an application or the internet. There are: the “pedestrian drive”, the “dark store” or even the “dark kitchen”. These last two types of establishments take the form of warehouses or places of delivery in which the customers do not enter.

Most (residents, editor’s note) do not know what the situation is. They see things happening downstairs.

Faced with the development of these new practices, local residents and traders denounce new nuisances: crowds of bicycles or scooters in the street day and night which obstruct the way, or even warehouses which take the place of shops. “Most (residents, editor’s note) do not know what the situation is. They see things happening downstairs“, explains the deputy mayor of Paris in charge of trade, crafts, Olivia Polski.

There is a lot of nuisance for local residents, but also a real difficulty for traders who pay for a doorstep, (…) and who see unfair competition set in. This has the effect of destabilizing local businesses“, she said at the start of the meeting.

After a short introduction by First Deputy Emmanuel Grégoire, Friday evening’s meeting mobilized several players from the City of Paris. I’Parisian urban planning workshop (APUR) first reported on its study on the phenomenon of “quick commerce” in Paris. Detailing the number of “dark store”, “dark kitchen”, or even “pedestrian drive” in the capital and in the inner suburbs, their radius of action and their method of distribution. The Town Planning Department (DU) then gave its opinion on the various legal aspects of control and potential repression of these phenomena in the event of illegality.

The participants, residents of dark kitchens or dark stores, were able to react or ask questions remotely. And there were a lot of them:How to recognize an illegal ‘dark store’?“, “What about the action of the labor inspectorate or the health services?“, “Do we correctly measure the actions of the Parisian municipal police towards ‘dark-stores’, ‘dark kitchens’ and others in terms of nuisance?“, or “what actions can be taken by co-ownerships?

Two weeks earlier, Emmanuel Grégoire brought together the actors of “quick commerce”. “We had an increase in the number of complaints from local residents and traders on a whole host of subjects, in particular competition, but also from professional organizations, for example on hygiene conditions.“says Olivia Polski.”On explained to them that the fast delivery system is part of a new mode of consumption, but that it cannot be done illegally“, she adds.

The deputy indicates that the City has identified “65 dark stores” in Paris, and that “sOf these 65, there are 45 who are illegal“.

At the beginning of March, the mayor of Paris asked for the closure of these 45 “dark stores”, deemed illegal, created without authorization. “They do not have the right to view the installation conditions provided for by the local urban plan. We told them: either you respect the law and you leave these places, or we will seek legal proceedings“, specifies Olivia Polski while acknowledging not having”no ability to shut down an establishment. It’s up to a judge to decide“, she insisted.

A form put online by the town hall of Paris makes it possible to report an unauthorized “dark store”.

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