The foundation stone of the new Soviet Embassy in Paris was laid at a site in the exclusive Boulovard Lannes on Monday (30 September) -- ending a prolonged controversy over its position.
GV PAN Building site
CU Road sign "Boulevard Lannes"
SV Guards with tracker dogs patrol outside building site
GV PAN FROM Road TO Embassy construction signboard (2 shots)
TV & GV Construction site (2 shots)
CU PAN Model of Embassy (2 shots)
SV Officials look at model
CU Official placing cylindrical container into foundation stone
CU Mr. Tchervonenko, Soviet Ambassador to France, sealing hole in foundation stone and cementing it (3 shots)
Initials B/0132 FC/PN/BB/0150
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Background: The foundation stone of the new Soviet Embassy in Paris was laid at a site in the exclusive Boulovard Lannes on Monday (30 September) -- ending a prolonged controversy over its position.
The Soviet Ambassador to France, M. Stepan Tchervonenko, was present at the simple ceremony, which also marked the end of delicate negotiations from all parties concerned to get the project under way.
The French Government agreed in 1970 to allow Soviet Embassy officials to construct a new Embassy on the understanding that the French Embassy in Moscow could be extended.
However, opposition to the choice of the site gathered momentum the following year.
There was opposition from both politicians and conservationists, as well as from an unexpected quarter -- a building society ... La Societe Bugeaud du Pompe.
With political undertones, the Centre Party deputies in Paris argued that the Government should not sacrifice a small sports ground for the new Soviet Embassy.
However, the Gaullist Party combined with the Communist deputies on the Paris Council to approve the project. But in their plans, they took account of the sportsmen's objections by making provision for a new sports stadium on the site.
Despite this, the building society and the conservationists continued to object to the new seven-storey building because they claimed it would spoil the general appearance of the exclusive area.
This was finally solved when it was agreed that the architecture of the building would be modified to fit in with its surroundings. A compromise was accepted by the building society on condition that no other out-of-character buildings would be built in the area.
Construction of the new Embassy finally went ahead at the beginning of August after considerable delay.