- The association of traders Les Vitrines de Strasbourg requested that the illuminations of the streets of the city be lit earlier in the day, as was the case, according to them, in past years.
- They are also asking that they remain in place until January 24, instead of the 10 initially planned, in order to make them coincide with the launch of the sales on January 20.
He sees red when the city lights are out. Pierre Bardet, the director of Vitrines de Strasbourg, brought up the testimonies, those of traders of course, but also of many Strasbourg residents who question him daily. The lights in the streets would be on too late this year, not before 4:30 p.m. In previous years, it was 4 pm, assures the trader, when the city plunges into darkness. The business association has increased the pressure. Result this Wednesday evening? “The miracle of the illuminations has operated again”, welcomes Pierre Bardet. They are finally lit at 4 p.m., as requested. Yet it was not won.
“It’s the lights that bring people in, that attract and create that warm Christmas atmosphere. It is not possible ! », Raged again this Wednesday morning Pierre Bardet. “I wonder why you did that. Especially this year when people need it. There are no chalets, these are the only decorations in Strasbourg. The people who no longer came because of the closure in other years and who come back keep telling me. We have to wait and wait when it’s too dark. A lack of lights all the more glaring as the Gate of Lights as well as the Blue Tree and the big Christmas tree remain on all day, for security reasons.
Adapt the time slot to health constraints
If he wants to believe in “a technical error” of the town hall, he still sent Guillaume Libsig, the deputy mayor of Strasbourg in charge of the Christmas Capital operation, documents mentioning the schedule usual in past years. “We are not going to screw up one more weekend! “
Affirmations swept away by the chosen one. He says it has been 4.30pm for five years, even though he acknowledges that the insistent demand “from downtown merchants has precipitated the adaptation of this new schedule”. Guillaume Libsig recalls that “anyway, in connection with the probably imminent arrival of a curfew, which will reduce the viewing window for illuminations and the issues of attractiveness”, it was decided to set up a time slot from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. (and no longer midnight). “Adapting the settings is not trivial, it is not just pressing a button,” smiles Guillaume Libsig.
Ignition problem solved, it is now the date when the lights stop which is the problem. Scheduled for January 10, like the big tree, traders are asking for an extension, until January 24. “Discussions and reflections are underway,” says Guillaume Libsig. Something to electrify Pierre Bardet once again. “They are already installed, people need lights this year, and that would coincide with the sales period which is exceptionally postponed to January 20. And why not in anticipation of a possible opening of bars and restaurants on that date? We never know… “