Last November, the Chanteloup-les-Vignes circus burned after a night of riots. The town hall intends to replace it, but also to rebuild a performance hall. These efforts embody the policy of urban renewal deployed over the past twenty years to break the image of these suburban towns.


Three and a half months ago, the circus tent installed in Chanteloup-les-Vignes went up in smoke after a night of riots. This commune of 10,000 inhabitants has become an example of a suburban city with problems, symbolized by the film La Haine released in 1995, which it served as a backdrop for. Since then, Chanteloup-les-Vignes has constantly wanted to break this image of a delinquent city. The Noé district, at the heart of the film, has already been transformed, but safety remains at the heart of the residents' concerns.

On site, everything has been cleaned since the November fire. Only the wooden shed of the circus company remains, just in front of a concrete slab with a large puddle. The director of the association, Neusa Thomasi, no longer wants to think about what happened. "We cannot stay on ashes! We must rebuild differently," she explains to Europe 1. A new marquee must be delivered within a month, it will be installed right next to it. In place of the old structure, the town hall has already planned to rebuild a performance hall.

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Many residents mention the efforts made by the municipality to change the image of the city, already deeply transformed with the urban renewal that began in the 2000s. The Noé district opened up and it became green . "They demolished the towers, renovated the buildings. It's less ghetto," says a resident. "There is less damage, fights between bands, it's better than before," adds another resident.

Young people left to their own devices

But according to the authorities, a pocket of around twenty delinquents is still resisting. Some are believed to be linked to drug trafficking at the foot of a building. Around, public lighting is regularly vandalized, which plunges the inhabitants in the dark, and this annoys Redouane, a well-known figure in the district, and a former mediator. "I go to the kids, and I say, 'What do you get for doing this?' It puts us in shit, in fear. Elderly people no longer dare to go out, kids no longer play ball under the covered market. There are not enough people to take care of young people who do not care nothing. It can't last like this, "he laments. This problem is also one of the priorities of the two officially declared municipal lists.