One of the proposed designs to rebuild the Notre Dame Cathedral has been revealed to the public – and it features an incredible glass roof complete with garden.
A huge fire tore through the historic landmark last month (April 15), partially destroying the famous cathedral as its spire and roof succumbed to the flames.
Parts of the Notre Dame Cathedral survived the blaze though, with the majority of the relics and pieces of art kept inside being saved. Regardless, donations began pouring in immediately, with donors pledging one billion euros in just two days.
In a televised address to the nation shortly after the fire took hold, President Emmanuel Macron pledged to bring Notre Dame back to its former glory within five years.
Since the French government launched an international architectural competition to redesign the burnt-out roof and spire of the cathedral, a number of proposed designs have been rolling in alongside the donations.
As reported by Sky News, one particular submission suggests replacing the roof and spire of the cathedral with an eco-friendly glass roof complete with a garden.
The proposal, suggested by Belgian-French architect Vincent Callebaut, envisions a ‘Gothic and biomimetic forest’ for the cathedral, along with a ‘solar and ventilated roof’.
According to the proposal on the architect’s website, the three-dimensional Gothic stained glass graft could be designed to produce all the electricity, heat and passive ventilation the cathedral might require.
As per the architect’s website:
The new wooden frame is covered with a three-dimensional crystal glass dress subdivided into faceted diamond-shaped elements.
These crystals consist of an organic active layer, made of carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen and oxygen, which absorbs light and transforms it into power. This energy, stored in hydrogen fuel cells, will be directly redistributed throughout the cathedral.
Callebaut also states the design would incorporate a garden feature not just for ‘contemplation and meditation’, but to grow up to 21 tons of fruits and vegetables to be redistributed for free each year.
The proposal goes on to say:
To that end, a farmers’ market would be held every week on the forecourt of Notre-Dame.
Other proposals suggested opening the reconstructed roof to the public, making the new spire entirely out of crystal that could be lit up at night or replacing lost structures with stained glass.
Another designer suggested building a brand new spire in the shape of the flames that destroyed it last month.
A winning design is yet to be chosen, but I’m looking forward to seeing the rest if they’re as good as these!
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A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).