Mayor Eric Johnson is continuing his visit to France, meeting with leaders in Dallas’ sister city, Dijon, to collaborate on transportation, technological initiatives, education, and economic development.
He met with officials in both Paris and Dijon on Monday, aiming to promote Dallas’ interests and foster economic relationships with France, as previously covered by The Dallas Express.
On Tuesday, Johnson met with transportation leaders in Dijon at DIVIA, an “innovative transportation agency in France that combines all mobility methods in the Dijon metropolis, including buses, trams, bicycles, and parking service,” according to a news release sent to The Dallas Express by the mayor’s office.
DIVIA highlighted the importance it places on resident feedback, and Mayor Johnson “agreed that public transportation and mobility methods must be efficient and convenient in order for them to properly serve residents.”
Johnson also met with Dijon Deputy Mayor Denis Hameau to discuss Dijon’s smart city initiatives and how the two cities can best service their residents through technology “to ensure they remain smart and connected.”
Dijon has a project known as ON-Dijon, which is “a tech platform that fosters collaboration and provides residents with accessibility to request city services and report issues in real-time.”
Johnson reportedly had “lively conversation” with representatives from Dijon’s higher education, chamber of commerce, a program for small businesses, and other economic organizations. They discussed the “importance of creating and fostering a healthy and competitive business community” and shared “ideas for future projects and workshops between Dallas and Dijon.”
The mayor met with Vincent Thomas, president of the University of Burgundy, and discussed “a variety of potential collaborative initiatives, including student and faculty exchanges between Dallas’s institutions of higher education and the University of Burgundy.”
“This trip to Dijon has highlighted the deep and lasting commitment between these two great cities,” read the statement from Johnson’s office. “Throughout the trip, the government and business leaders of Dijon expressed their deep appreciation for Mayor Johnson being the first Mayor of Dallas to visit their city. Mayor Johnson expressed his gratitude for Dijon’s extraordinary hospitality.”