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Nice running for 2028 Capital of Culture

Updated: Jun 18, 2021

Mayor of Nice, Christian Estrosi, plans to invest over €100 million in the city for its candidacy as a European Capital of Culture in 2028.

'The Iconic' planned structure at the Gare de Thiers. c. Ville de Nice

Nice, with its many art museums, galleries, theatres, opera house and rich programme of events and festivals throughout the year, is already a colourful coastal culture capital - but Mayor Christian Estrosi wants the city's contribution to European culture to be recognised on the continental level. So much so, in fact, that he has announced plans to invest over €100 million in the city's cultural institutions and venues for the initiative.

During a video call earlier this year with local citizens working in culture, Christian Estrosi said: "I hope to present Nice's candidacy for the title of European Capital of Culture, which France will organise jointly with the Czech Republic in 2028. More than ever, this effort will require us to show solidarity, trust, creativity and boldness." In fact, Nice is already nominated for the prestigious accolade of UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The European Capitals of Culture (ECOC) initiative was designed by the European Parliement to:

  • Highlight the richness and diversity of cultures in Europe

  • Celebrate the cultural features Europeans share

  • Increase European citizens' sense of belonging to a common cultural area

  • Foster the contribution of culture to the development of cities

In addition to this, experience has shown that the designation improves international profile of cities; enhances the image of cities in the eyes of their own inhabitants; and boosts tourism.

The initiative was developed in 1985 and has, to date, been awarded to more than 60 cities across the European Union (EU) and beyond.

This isn't the first time Nice has competed for the title, as the city was put forward in 2013 but was unsuccessful.

Part of the preparations will involve a €20 million investment in the city's museums, including MAMAC, Musée Matisse, Musée des Beaux-Arts, and the Archeology Museum of Cimiez.

2028 seems a long time away, but in order to meet all the cultural specifications, it may be quite a challenge. We'll see how the city fares in the competition...


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