In 1894, Louis Pille, who was then only twenty-six, entered a project in the competition for buildings for the Universal Exhibition of 1900. All the projects were exhibited in the Palais de l'Industrie in 1895. The program left the designers free to preserve or demolish the monuments left over from the previous Universal Exhibition in 1889: the Palais des Beaux-Arts and the Palais des Arts Libéraux by Jean-Camille Formigé, the monumental dome by Joseph Bouvard, the Galerie des Machines by Ferdinand Dutert and Victor Contamin and, of course, the Eiffel Tower. Pille decided to keep almost all the buildings, while modifying their appearance, and he filled his new version of the Palais de l'Industrie with exhibitions of fine arts.
The Palais de l'Industrie had been built for the first Universal Exhibition in 1855 and was used for all kinds of public events, mainly the art exhibitions of the Salon. Pille kept the original building but doubled its former volume and surrounded it with a monumental facade. The main entrance led to a garden running down to the Seine, linked to the Invalides by two monumental bridges. In the end, the building was demolished and replaced by the Grand Palais.