ZAD, the story so far...

4 November 2010

A community fights on against the invasion of the bulldozer empire....

And as the empire grows, the community must also grow, and look for those to join the fight....

For over 40 years, a storm cloud has been gathering, 25km north of the city of Nantes, France, over a rural area of farms, fields, houses, marshlands and forests. As an integral part of the massive expansion of the so-called "eco metropole" of the grand-ouest, the local government has been buying up an area of over 1860 hectares of land to make way for the construction of a so-called "high quality environmental" project a new airport, highway bypass and tgv train line. This zone is officially known as the "ZAD", "Zone d'Amenegment Differè, and by us who resist as the "Zone A Defendre".

Since the announcement of the plans, local residents and farmers have organised their resistance through petitions, demonstrations and a tractor occupation in the centre of Nantes. In spring and autumn '09, the area was in a state of military guard, as 150 military cops were sent out to protect machines involved in the early works of core drilling and soil sampling. This is not a normal course of action; rather it was the response of the local government to acts of sabotage that occurred earlier on during the works.

In September '09, after a climate camp in the ZAD, a call was made to occupy the abandoned houses and threatened areas of the ZAD, with support of local people in resistance to the airport. This call has been answered, and already there are some 13 occupied areas on the ZAD, including empty farmhouses, caravans on abandoned land, forests and collective gardens. On July 15th 2010, authorities delivered papers to 5 occupied areas, warning the occupiers that they should vacate these places by the 30th July or face legal proceedings and evictions. Earlier that day, an agreement was signed by 5 unimportant bureaucrats to finance the construction of the airport. On 29th July 2010, about 40 people occupied the council offices in Nantes. The next day, it was made public that the multinational construction company Vinci had been awarded the contract to build the airport. Already the first works have begun on the Barreau Routier, a highway bypass being built to serve the airport. In August 2010 the city of Nantes made public their search for a security company to be on constant guard on the construction sites and areas around the ZAD.

But we won't be moved so easily. Busily growing food to support us over the next years, looking for further areas to occupy and building defences within the ZAD, we are digging our heels in even deeper and preparing for the fight.

If you would like to join, or even come and visit, we are always open. There are many houses, fields, trees, caravans that are to be occupied and defended when the time comes. If you have your own project to contribute, like setting up a new space, garden, action ideas, or any other useful resources or talents, even better. We are encouraging people to try and be as self sufficient as possible within this space, as well as wanting to be inspired to become part of this ever growing struggle against the machine of progress. Or if you can't come and visit us, maybe you feel the wish to visit some sites or offices of Vinci in your area......

Wish list / ideas of stuff to bring.... bicycles and trailers, tarps, tools, building and barricading materials, climbing materials, computer and technical skills, wheelbarrows, rope of all kinds, books, vans/trucks, media resources, ideas, inspiration, fighting energy, donkeys, dragons and dentists.....

map/directions to the zad
email - zad@riseup.net
to sign up to our list, please email zad-occupation@lists.aktivix.org
Website coming soon

+ An update
This week (yesterday the 2nd of November) they started the drilling for testing soil where the highway is supposed to be build. Lets stop it!