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The roofs have become emblematic of the City of Light.

July 27, 2017

From the Louvre to the boulevards of Haussmann and the literary hangouts of Montmartre, Paris has been a center of innovation in culture throughout history.

The city is now looking to obtain that official status for a surprising monument: its rooftops.

Paris has begun the process of having its classic zinc rooftops recognized by UNESCO as a world heritage site, local news outlets reported. The process is long and arduous, involving many inspections, and it could be years before the international organization renders its decision.

Currently, the only UNESCO world heritage site in Paris is the banks of the river Seine.

Local union workers who restore and rebuild the rooftops noted that their profession has been in decline among younger populations and expressed hope that world heritage status could spark interest.

"Being included on the list marks a just recognition of our profession," Angel Sanchez, president of the union that represents the roofers, told Le Parisien. "Our tools have modernized. The inherent risks of our profession have declined, but our methods have remained traditional."

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