Death of Paul Chemetov, the architect of the emblematic Ministry of Finance of Bercy

It will remain famous for the headquarters of the Ministry of Finance at Bercy, in Paris. Architect Paul Chemetov died on Monday, his family announced. This native of Paris died at the age of 95 at his home in the capital.

Son of Russian emigrants, including the illustrator Alexandre Chemetoff known as Chem, this graduate of the Beaux-Arts in Paris was influenced by the designs of Corbusier. Passionate about town planning, he won numerous public architectural competitions allowing him to create several buildings, particularly in the Paris region.


The Bercy “liner”, built between 1984 and 1989, brings together the Ministry of Finance in a single district. “Bercy is the only administrative building built perpendicular to the Seine”, underlines the ministry on its website, noting its “medieval symbolism”, with moats and a bronze door of honor.

Serving the most modest

Paul Chemetov also designed the rehabilitation of the Grand Gallery of the Evolution of the Natural History Museum in Paris, the Place Carrée within the Forum des Halles or the extension of the Tuileries-Etoile axis beyond La Défense. But also the French embassy in India.

Some of his creations, criticized for their outdated aesthetic, have not survived. In the southern suburbs of Paris, he took legal action against the demolitions in the Essonne department of a residential building in Courcouronnes and that of the Health Insurance headquarters in Vigneux-sur-Seine but he lost the twice.


A long-time member of the Communist Party, he said he was at the service of the most modest inhabitants. He was thus able to coordinate the renovation in 2015 of the imposing Coursives building in Pantin (Seine-Saint-Denis), more than 30 years after having supervised its construction.

By Editor

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