Fifteen months after the fire that ravaged the cathedral, Emmanuel Macron finally opted to rebuild the cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris identically. A decision full of "common sense" for Monsignor Patrick Chauvet, rector of the cathedral, happy that the harmony and the history of the building could be respected.


The images of the Notre-Dame de Paris cathedral devastated by a fire on the evening of April 15, 2019 are still in everyone's mind. Those before the drama too, and will ultimately be the same as those after renovation. The President of the Republic, Emmanuel Macron, announced Thursday that the building would be rebuilt identically. The meeting of experts from the National Commission for Heritage and Architecture rejected more outlandish ideas than the others such as a hanging garden on the roof or a glass spire.

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A Commission in which the clergy participated, and in particular Monsignor Patrick Chauvet, rector of Notre-Dame, who admitted on Europe 1 Friday not to worry too much about the decision of the experts, the latter not wanting "something revolutionary ". "We were heard but it was not we who made the decision. The building belongs to the state and it is responsible for the restoration," he wanted to recall.

"Arrows that looked like the Eiffel Tower upside down"

Monseigneur Patrick Chauvet admits having nevertheless had some fears after having received projects which distorted the initial building. "I had a shudder. I said to myself: 'My God, what will become of the cathedral?' There were arrows that looked like the Eiffel Tower upside down. I was a little worried, "he says. A concern that did not prevent him from assuming that "common sense would prevail".

With Emmanuel Macron's decision to restore Notre-Dame with the same plans as those of Viollet-le-Duc in the 19th century, the clergyman was delighted with the result. "We are entering a history, a tradition. The experts were right to restore harmony to Notre-Dame. To redo this cathedral you need a lot of humility, you are part of a beautiful tradition of 855 years."

"Our young people will be able to see the work of the builders"

Monsignor Patrick Chauvet is pleased to keep the historic heritage of one of the jewels of French heritage intact for a long time to come. "To tell ourselves that our young people will be able to see the work of the cathedral builders, with wood, stone, it is important", he rejoiced. A reconstruction in five years with a reopening in 2024 are still planned for the moment.