Notre Dame Cathedral To Be Re-Built Exactly As It Was Before The Fires
The world was shocked to see the Notre Dame Cathedral, one the most internationally beloved UNESCO World Heritage Sites, go up in flames just over a year ago in April 2019.
French president Emmanuel Macron was quick to declare the 850-year-old cathedral would be rebuilt by 2024—when Paris is set to host the Olympics—the exact process remained a hotly debated subject until recently.
President Macron had previously supported a new, contemporary design for the reconstruction that would come from an international design competition that was meant to reimagine the roof and spire, but just last week he switched gears and opted to restore the spire to exactly how it looked prior to the devastating fire.
Macron’s recent change of plans comes at the heels of a suggestion by the country’s National Heritage and Architecture Commission, an advisory body for restoration projects. The committee urged Macron to reconsider a replica of the original design in order to “guarantee the authenticity, the harmony, and the coherence of this masterpiece of Gothic architecture.”
“The President of the Republic has become convinced of the need to restore Notre Dame de Paris in the most consistent manner possible to its last complete, coherent and known state,” the Elysée Palace, the president’s official residence, said in a statement.
The roof itself will once again be covered in lead, despite health concerns, to replicate the original design, while the spire will also replicate the original structure, which was created by Eugène Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc’s during a restoration project in the mid 19th century.
The Notre Dame Cathedral had already been in the process of cleaning up and decontamination for over a year at this point, with rebuilding being put on hold until next year due to COVID-19 and the recent change of design plans.