The Agency

June 2020, last updated 06 July 2021
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The Paris Urbanism Agency (Apur), is an association regulated by the 1901 Law and was created on 3rd July 1967 by Paris City Council. Since 1st February 2012, Dominique Alba the architect, has been Managing Director.

View of La Défense seen from the 20th district © Apur

What does Apur do?

Apur’s mission is to document, analyse and develop forward looking strategies which address the urban and societal evolution of Paris and Greater Paris (Métropole du Grand Paris). It is :

  • A tool at the service of urban development public policy makers and development on Parisian and metropolitan scales;
  • A pathfinder in setting up the Métropole du Grand Paris while taking into consideration its characteristics and competence as defined in the text of the Maptam Law for the modernisation of territorial public action and the assertiveness of metropolises;
  • A platform for exchanging information, sharing construction and distribution with all the key players in Paris and the Métropole du Grand Paris, technical syndicates, public establishments, municipalities and its citizens.


Its missions are decided upon each year at a general assembly where a detailed work programme is adopted which includes all the studies, observatories and data processing that Apur is responsible for carrying out and making known to its administrators and the general public.
Apur is also involved in missions beyond its social role when it responds to calls for tenders  put out by Ile-de-France or foreign municipalities.


50 years of urban history

Expo web -

Since 1967, Apur has accompanied public policy. To celebrate its 50th anniversary, the Agency has put on line the exhibition “Imagining Paris and Grand Paris since 1967” which retraces 50 years of urban history through selected studies each illustrating the extent of the ground that has been covered. There are over 300 archive documents and 15,000 pages which have been digitalised in order to put the exhibition together which will be further enriched each year with new tasks accomplished.

Partnership work programme

The Agency’s 2021-2022 work programme is organised around 3 main lines of activity:

  • Databases and map-making
  • Forward-thinking knowledge to plan a sustainable city for all
  • The transformation of areas within the territory

In addition there is international work and a new dissemination space where web-conferences are broadcast.

It addresses three objectives:
1/ To enhance “recurring” works, the unifying cornerstone
2/ A multi-scalar and reinforced cross-sectional approach
3/ More in-depth, forward looking studies on:

  • urbanism documents
  • the evolution of urban services and their networking
  • housing in dense zones
  • public facilities and services by 2030
  • new land approaches based on the economy and enhancement of existing resources, and the recycling of stock
  • and also the evolution of the society faced with the arrival of new technologies, mobilities, web platforms, etc.

The majority of this work - apart from the observatories which are specifically for institutional partners - is accessible to the general public on this site and a great number of data are made available on the Apur open data platform.



Apur’s annual budget is approximately 9 million euros.

  • 92% of its revenue is made up of subsidies from partners for missions included in the partnership work programme.
  • 8% are their own-source income (contracts and complementary funding provided by local authorities or the Public Establishment for Intercommunal Co-operation -EPCI-, which are concerned with studies included in the partnership work programme).


Status and governance body

Apur is a non-profit making association made up of 29 partner members whose Chairman is Claude Dargent, City Councillor of Paris and the 15th district (since 23rd June 2014).
The make up of the assembly manifests the determination to put in place a structure for studying and exchanging ideas in liaison with the major key players within the Metropolis.

The Chairman, Claude Dargent, was mandated to represent Apur at the FNAU (National Federation of Urbanism Agencies) meetings.



Apur has 84 employees (FTE in 2019) who form multi-disciplinary teams:

  • heads of studies (architects, engineers, economists, geographers, sociologists, demographers, cartographers);
  • GIS and data base specialists, geomaticians, statisticians;
  • documentation, publishing and communication departments;
  • general departments (personnel, accounts…).



The Agency has a documentary collection devoted to the urban, societal, economic and environment evolution of Paris in its metropolitan context and makes comparisons with other large European and international metropolises. This collection is made up of 20,000 references which, apart from Apur's publications, includes maps, Paris City Council deliberations, study and research reports, public reports, theses and memoirs. 

These documents can be consulted by appointment but cannot be lent externally. An iconographic collection is also available. The collection deals essentially with Paris and covers the period from 1970 to the present day. With a wealth of around 20,000 digital documents and 70,000 analog processed documents, the collection is made up of photographs, maps, historical maps, studies, projections…


Seine Valley

The cooperation of urbanism agencies since 2010 has provided technical support to regional and national politicians in that concerning the course of the River Seine. Bringing together agencies from Caen (AUCAME), Le Havre (AURH),  Ile-de-France (Institut Paris Region), Paris (Apur) and Rouen (AURBSE), this cooperation is notably commissioned by the Seine Valley State-Regions Interregional Plan Contract - CPIER - to:: 

  • draw up a plan of action for monitoring territorial dynamics; this plan should notably enable a common core to be established and knowledge to be shared; 
  • organise meetings of the Seine Valley urbanism agencies and produce an annual study in order to further the dynamic of the Seine Valley Project.

In 2018/2019, Apur was responsible for running and animating all the cooperative activities of the Seine Valley urbanism agencies notably by organising the annual symposium and managing a study on the theme of fluvial and maritime tourism along the Seine Valley.

For more information on the cooperation of the Seine Valley urbanism agencies consult the site devoted to their cooperation.


Documents to download

  • Document

    2021/2022 Partnership work programme

    Format : pdf, 17.16 MB
  • Document

    2020 Activity Report

    Format : pdf, 38.27 MB
  • Document

    Status - 25 June 2021

    Format : pdf, 248.63 KB
  • Document

    The Agency’s work made available online in 2020

    Format : pdf, 6.88 MB