One thing about Paris is that their downtown is height limited [see the Urbanism/Architecture heading at Wikipedia]. This contributes significantly to the city's charm:
A building's height was also defined according to the width of the street it lines, and Paris' building code has seen few changes since the mid-19th century to allow for higher constructions. It is for this reason, save for a few 'pointed' examples, that Paris seems an essentially flat city when compared to some of the world's other metropoles.
High buildings are allowed only at the city perimeter. This is what tourists see when they visit.
Recent news stories are indicating Parisians are not too happy with the direction of their city:
For while tourists flock to the capital, the locals are leaving, fed up with the traffic, the pollution, the lack of affordable housing and office space, parks and open spaces. The number of Parisians, currently 2.1 million, is shrinking at more than 1% a year. The city has lost an estimated one in 10 of its jobs over the past 15 years as firms move to cheaper and quieter locations.
"We must absolutely allow all those Parisians who want to stay in their city to stay there. That's why we are making an enormous effort in terms of housing, in terms of places for economic activity and creating green open spaces in terms of quality of life improvements for the 21st century."
This sounds similar to issues that have been raised in Sarasota; no affordable housing, traffic increasing, pollution and skyscrapers blocking light and air. Our economic activity is driven by building housing for the wealthy.
Are we headed toward a city of retirees and wealthy part-time residents with no services? Do we want to be more like Paris?