Le géant irlandais Primark, rue de Rémusat, fait partie de ces magasins qui laissent leurs portes ouvertes tout en faisant fonctionner la clim. Mais c

Toulouse. These stores turn on the air conditioners and leave their doors wide open

Irish giant Primark, Rue Rémusat, is one of those stores that leave their doors open while the air conditioner is on. But it’s not the only one in downtown Toulouse… (© Akto Toulouse/Anthony Assimat)

Recent events of heat waves, giant wildfires – particularly in the Gironde – or even melting glaciers have brought the issue of global warming to the fore once again.

And there is the topic of controversy that escalates in the big cities to implement the environment on a daily basis: the air conditioning is running at full speed in the stores … even though the doors are wide open! environmental perversion? Focus on convenience for customers?

Leon has just banned this practice

In Lyon (Rhone), Mayor (EELV) Gregory Ducet decided : Since Wednesday, July 20, 2022, all stores in the capital of Gaul must choose: turn on the air conditioning and close their doors or leave them open, which is more welcoming to the public, and leave the heat to return.

“I have decided to decree that it is intended to regulate the use of air conditioning in city shops. It is a logical decision for the benefit of the planet and therefore for the benefit of all. In a context where temperatures are rising and energy prices are on the rise, we are launching a call to mobilize for greater sobriety.”

Gregory Ducet, Mayor of Lyon (EELV)With our colleagues from Actu Lyon

The Lyon initiative came two days after the implementation of a decree of the same kind in the municipality of Bourg-en-Bresse (Ain), one hour from Lyon, from the mayor, PS Jean-Francois Debat. And if Bourg-en-Bresse chooses the punishment, with a fine of at least 38 euros in case of non-compliance with the ban, then the city of Lyon has not yet talked about a fine …

St. Roma Street and Alsace-Lorraine Street

What about the topic in Toulouse? Toulouse news I decided, Thursday, July 21, 2022, to poll the merchants’ opinion on this matter in the most emblematic arteries, particularly in the direction of the Rue Saint-Roma and the Rue Alsace-Lorraine.

Sign Hema, Street of Changes.
Sign Hema, Street of Changes. (© Akto Toulouse/Anthony Assimat)

Rue Saint-Rome, a practice denounced by Toulouse environmentalists, in particular, affects both major international brands and independents. Dutch chain of decorative accessories and kitchen utensils HemaThe store declares rue des Changes, in the extension of the famous downtown shopping street, “in accordance with the instructions of our management”. “It’s easy for customers because the doors are heavy to push.”

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HVAC curtain, the solution?

Moreover, in Tally WeiglAn air conditioning curtain has been installed at the entrance and the doors open non-stop. “This prevents heat from getting in and keeps the air conditioning very focused indoors,” explains the saleswoman. Even if eco-efficiency is not 100% guaranteed, dealers, “small” or independent, often do not have the means to pay for this expensive system that many shops in the Pink City use.

In this other shop the same note: we leave the doors open on the instructions of the management. But the saleswoman does not hide that “it would be better to close the doors” …

These companies are leaving their doors closed

While the number of stores that want air-conditioning butter, open doors, and butter money to facilitate customer access, is high enough, other retailers have decided to play the game, often because of the environment. This is the case of Levis, rue Saint-Rome. “For us, it is pointless to leave the doors open while the air conditioning is working,” the sign reads.
In Cherry Time, the door is closed but a small message indicates that the shop is open. “We decided to leave it closed, mainly for environmental reasons, to keep the store cool,” the manager tells us. But there is a consensus between the two brands: the environment has a cost. “Customers are coming in smaller quantities and getting questioned more. Sometimes they wonder if it’s closed.”

Wide open in Primark

Rue de Rémusat, the Irish giant of ready-to-wear Primark, Which attracts a stressed crowd to its three floors on a daily basis, is no exception to this phenomenon. On the two main entrances, the four doors are permanently open. On the Périgord Street side, only one of the two is open, while the emergency exits remain closed for safety.

call him Toulouse newsThe operation is justified by Primark France’s management, which its critics increasingly view as anti-environmental.

“We have an obligation to leave the doors open in order to comply with safety instructions, in order to better manage the flows of people entering and exiting stores. This is even if the air conditioning is operating especially in the summer.

Primark France spokesperson
Zara store, Alsace-Lorraine Street.
Zara store, Alsace-Lorraine Street. (© Akto Toulouse/Anthony Assimat)

Rue d’Alsace-Lorraine, another giant downtown, ZaraShe has automatic doors in her store on the corner of Lafayette Street. One located opposite the Capitol Metro exit, on the other hand, leaves it wide open to simplify entrances and exits.

“The door is closed, less people come in”

In this strategic artery, various kinds of stores also maintain this cycle, such as the Art Gallery Artists’ Square. However, Jeremy, the manager, acknowledges that he is “everyday eco-friendly” and “very cognizant”. But on this question, low fears are often more powerful than anything else.

“I’ve already tested with the door open and closed. But people come in less, it’s clear and the traffic stats are realistic: it’s 35% less in the store. People immediately buy the heart, especially instinctively for the panels. Pushing the doors in is not an easy issue.. It seems to me that it is difficult to close the entrances, especially in the current context and after the bombing of the Covid and the yellow jackets…”.

JeremiahCarré d’Artistes Gallery Director

Thinking in Progress at Sostrene Green

Danish brand sustrin green, Which offers cutlery, small furniture and toys, among other things, landed at the end of 2018. Despite its cozy, green and upscale Scandinavian world, the brand operates like many of its fellow merchants.

Marion, the manager, puts forward a series of arguments on a very topical topic of thought for her shop.

“First, the entrance doors are not fitting, there are no street-side handles. This has been the case for several years. We can change the entry system, but the process is long with the town hall and the architects of the Baths de France (ABF). Before, we left two entrances open, And now we’re restricted to one door. We haven’t had any frequent comments about it but we’ll surely hear more about it.”

MarionSostrene Green store manager in Toulouse

Sostrene Grene also installed this popular air conditioning curtain. The store specifies that in the summer it alternates between air conditioning and ventilation and hot air in the winter.

Very different cases depending on the work

Strolling the streets of Toulouse shows that every business is unique, between those who have the means to invest in automated doors, those who have doors that are too heavy to push, and those who are open to the four winds and who do not have as their metal grille as closing/opening, Those who take on the environmental role and those who assume making their customers comfortable are a priority. “Many expect adaptation to be mandatory,” concludes Marion, Sostrene Greene’s director.

Could this be the choice town hall made? Will Toulouse follow Lyon? Upon contact, the Capitol has yet to respond to our requests.

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