Wonderful Engineering

7 Exceptional Reconstruction Ideas For Notre Dame

A raging fire on 15th April was able to destroy the roof and spire of the famous Notre Dame de Paris located in the heart of the city. Millions watched the scene all over the world. Soon enough, people came together and raised funds to restore the iconic landmark back to its former glory and more if possible. A competition is being held for proposals that call on to architects from all over the world to try their expertise and creativity.

We have made a list of seven of the boldest and interesting designs that have been put up so far. The list is in no particular order. Check it out below and let us know what you think of it;

7. Bringing Latest Technology

This particular design comes from Vincent Callebaut Architectures and is perhaps among the most interestingly unique visions for the Notre Dame. The architectures want to blend the old design with the new technology and have plans to incorporate solar panels and urban garden to the cathedral.

6. Natural Sanctuary

This design seeks to repurpose the new roof and spire as a memorial to the past while providing a sanctuary to nature. Summum Architecture has designed a glass structure roof and spire featuring red and purple vegetation while remembering the inferno that destroyed it. Summum Architecture has said, ‘May this reconstruction serves the environment and demonstrate to the rest of the world the knowledge of our French companions of how to deal with magnificent, technical, timeless architecture at the highest level possible. A symbol for future generations.’

5. Stained Glass

This one comes from a Brazillian architect known as Alexandre Fantozzi. According to him, the stained glassed windows as among the superb features in Gothic cathedrals. This resonates with the notion of ‘less is more’.

4. Garden Roof

Clément Willemin is an architect and landscape designer who wants to replace quite a bit of the structure with an open-air rooftop garden. The garden will have walking paths along with wild-looking bushes, flower beds, and plants. He doubts his design will win though because of the mixed response.

3. Eternal Flame

Architect Mathieu Lehanneur has proposed rebuilding the spire as a huge flame. If his proposal wins, there will be 100 meters of carbon and fiber and gold leaf flame that shall be erupting from the rebuilt roof.

2. Open-Air Swimming Pool

Ulf Mejergren Architects, on the other hands, wish to include an outdoor pool instead of the lost roof and spire. The open-air would offer ‘unmatched views of Paris’ while having the twelve statues of the apostles that were removed from the roof. The studio said, ‘Our addition is a complementary spatial experience to the building that will match the awe of the great interior; a space for thinking and self-reflection.’


AR+TE ARCHITECTES, French Architecture Firm, wished to rebuild the spire and the roof using the former conventional design. They do suggest adding more spires to the towers and glazing (partial) the new roof. AR+TE ARCHITECTES said, ‘Its reconstruction will be done by the respect of the old building and by the acceptance of the challenge of modern techniques. Notre Dame reflects this transition between the past and modernity. To do this, we will resume the momentum of elevation wanted by the builders with the spires of the cathedral.’