On April 15, 2019, one of the most horrific fires of the year broke out when the roof of the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris went up in flames. The inferno lasted for around 15 hours as the world watched in terror. The fire completely destroyed the famous landmarks' iconic spire that collapsed hours after the fire was initially noticed. Most of the wood/metal roof of the gothic architecture cathedral was also destroyed, with only about one-third of the roof remaining. The interior of the cathedral didn't suffer extensive damage thanks to the stone-vaulted ceiling that largely contained the burning roof as it collapsed.

In the following days, French President Emmanuel Macron reassured the public that the historic building could be restored and a fundraising campaign was quickly initiated to help fund the restoration (that could take up to 20 years or more). As of April 22, 2019, over €1 billion was collected.

On April 17, France announced their plans to host a competition to design a replacement spire for the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris. French prime minister Edouard Philippe was reported saying that the government was looking for a unique design "adapted to the techniques and the challenges of our era." This prompted many architects and designers to power up their creative minds and conjure new images of the roof and the spire. From contemporary glass towers to Gothic stained glass windows, the entries so far offer a fresh reimagination of the classic tourist attraction. Scroll down below to see the cool designs and don't forget to comment and vote for your favorites!

#1

New Spire Designs

ejezeta.cl Report

Rob Chapman
Community Member
2 years ago

Well, this is the only one on this list that does't look absolutely horrible. But still...

Carolina Omena
Community Member
1 year ago

Yes! Agreed!

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Nadège
Community Member
2 years ago

i think this one is my favourite, it's not big and flashy

Elaine Dodge
Community Member
2 years ago (edited)

Best one so far. It's neat,clean and not trying to take any glory away from the rest of the structure.

Kathryn Baylis
Community Member
2 years ago

Agreed. It's nice enough to be lovely, but low key enough to not take away from the original. Another poster suggested antique roses in a greenhouse under the glass. That would be both beautiful and smart. Add some other flowers, and the cathedral bees will have some sweet nectar to drink!

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Kryogen
Community Member
2 years ago

Only an architect can imagine that. Indeed, how do you wash the windows ? With the millions of doves in Paris, you will see tons of shit on the roof, from the ground ! And everyone will be able to say : Holy shit ! (if you're lookin' for me, i'm already out)

Anderson B. da Silva
Community Member
2 years ago (edited)

It doesn't match any of them with the classic and traditional architecture. The model presented by me is the best to preserve the old features. novo-model...d2-png.jpg novo-modelo-da-catedral-de-notre-dame-5d5594866ccd2-png.jpg

Igor Slavkovski
Community Member
2 years ago

I can go along with this one. Simple. For the rest I don't even want to spend words.

Barbara Vandewalle
Community Member
2 years ago

To all of the 'modern' ideas NONONONONONONO This a cathedral that was to honor GOD not be an ugly art show

Jose de Herrera
Community Member
2 years ago

Hear, hear!

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Roberto Durante
Community Member
2 years ago

to bring some light in the darkness

The Dutches
Community Member
2 years ago

I agree. I love the Notre Dame, but it was always very dark inside.

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Jane Alexander
Community Member
2 years ago

Surely the parts that burned could be reproduced from photos. I feel that most of these 'designs' were submitted by naughty children just seeing how far they could push.

Rachael Matsell
Community Member
2 years ago

It should be rebuilt to look as close to the original as possible.

Quinn Alexander
Community Member
2 years ago

This would be interesting but it looks too much like a train station

Jennifer Hejtmánková
Community Member
2 years ago

Boring

Mike Procaccini
Community Member
2 years ago

That could work. It looks like it was supposed to be there.

Nick Sady
Community Member
2 years ago (edited)

It looks like it's been converted into some sort of wank office space with an ungodly number of mezzanine levels, snack stations and corduroy wearing twats having meetings in bean bags.

D A W N
Community Member
2 years ago

Perfect.

Matt York
Community Member
2 years ago

i agree, no need to altar historical creations to fit our sense of modern architectural acceptance

David Sandelin
Community Member
2 years ago

Replacing a tremendous rof with a really boring glass and steel construction is not altering it? Right....

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Larissa Maikapar
Community Member
1 year ago (edited)

What???... Transform Notre Dame Cathedral into Disneyland???... Money-money-money???... And how heavy it's gonna be that glass/steel construction + massive crowds of tourists???... And how often that glass roof needs cleaning???...

Jose de Herrera
Community Member
2 years ago

This one reconstructs the spire as mandated by the French Senate and also keeps the original attic roof line. Glass is not a good medium for the roof, just replace what was there before the fire. The French government has asked that modern materials and technologies be used in the reconstruction. No light will filter into the church nave because there are stone vaults over the naves.

Pamela Varney Morin
Community Member
2 years ago

I agree, best choice out of what's available; unless you can re- build like original roof & spire.

Jose de Herrera
Community Member
2 years ago

Happily this will not be the case as the French Senate requires that Notre-Dame’s spire be rebuilt ‘exactly as it was’ which has already relegated all these abominable concepts in the garbage where they belong.

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Ann Abdelzaher
Community Member
2 years ago

IMO somewhat better than the original one but still doesn't go with the church.

Karina Andersen
Community Member
2 years ago

all a waste of money churches bombed in WWII look better

Blanche Thorson
Community Member
2 years ago

Almost all of these designs are way too small for the building, this is a massive stately building, a skinning spire just looks odd

Millard Fillmore
Community Member
2 years ago

No one seems to know that the spire was from Victorian times and has nothing to do with the original cathedral. I think it shouldn't be rebuilt. Victorians loved to add frills to classical medieval buildings that don't match the architecture.

Jose de Herrera
Community Member
2 years ago

To be precise it started under Louis Philippe, king of the French, this is not England, and architect Viollet-le Duc's spire and roof addition respected the architectural style of the church, it did not detract from it.

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John Sampson
Community Member
2 years ago

Definitely the only one that would reach a serious selection panel. The rest are just exercises in professional egotism!

Rolando Barrero
Community Member
10 months ago

My idea - rebuilt the original design, just add skylights studying it well where to locate them to make the interior less dark and locate light rays toward important areas like the altar, lectern and major statues inside. Study them well where to locate the rays stricking at a certain times and abo above all, they shouln’t be too obvious from the outsize.

Matteo Durasevic
Community Member
1 year ago

I would like it if there were slightly less window But the idea would be good to add a SMALL amount

Ryan Deschanel
Community Member
1 year ago

A glass roof? You people know that there are stone vaults below, right? It would be useless, unless they destroy the vaults and the flying buttresses (but it would not be restoration anymore) or use the attic for something (but it would be desecration).

Matteo Durasevic
Community Member
1 year ago

I kinda of like it but there should be less windows maybe.

Jose de Herrera
Community Member
2 years ago

Pitch these designs for a new modern religious structure, these ideas do not integrate at all with the Gothic architecture of the church. Really a glass roof? A swimming pool? A public garden/conservatory? They have no place in any religious building. Stain glass belongs in windows not on a roof attic. The cost of upkeep alone will relegate these atrocities to the garbage heap where they belong. The French government said the modern materials and technologies should be used for reconstruction, it did not say to desecrate the church which is a monument for Humanity and the best example of High Gothic architecture. York Minster in England suffered a similar fate but the English understood well to preserve and maintain the original structure as it had stood for centuries. If any of these atrocious "design and ideas" come to fruition you can bet that a lot of money promised to the rebuilding effort will not be forthcoming.

Carolyn Riddle
Community Member
2 years ago

OK, after looking at all of them, if you must have a glass roof, then this is the only one that at least isn't ridiculous.

Huong Nguyen
Community Member
2 years ago

It look like my father but not my father!

Andreas Preuss
Community Member
2 years ago

Comes closest to what has been there. But why then modify it?

Jose de Herrera
Community Member
2 years ago

Happily this will not be the case as the French Senate requires that Notre-Dame’s spire be rebuilt ‘exactly as it was’ which has already relegated all these abominable concepts in the garbage where they belong.

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Bruce Daily
Community Member
2 years ago

Very elegant, in character with existing architecture and most importantly no wood, so nearly fireproof.

Lynn Forsgren
Community Member
2 years ago

Notre Dame's resurrection should be kept in sync with its past. This is probably the closest design but I would favor design that allows the dark mystery of the cathedral to be recreated. Please remember the atmosphere she had. Please allow that to be recreated with the incense and the thousands of prayers that will be offered, the pain and joy that is brought to her.

Jennifer Lilley
Community Member
2 years ago

This is the only one that does not look like a holy mess.

Sugar Latte
Community Member
2 years ago

I think I really like this one the best! I feel like it matches this cathedral much more than the others.

Linda Early
Community Member
2 years ago

Love it. Doesn't take away from the rest of the cathedral.

Mike Vagg
Community Member
2 years ago

Nice, that's how I remember it 52 years ago.

Mehmet Hacı
Community Member
2 years ago

Is it the same?

john bartholomew (murkle46)
Community Member
2 years ago

The spire should be replaced with a giant 200 ft tall fiberglass baguette poking out of giant wheel of cheese with a slice missing from the side.

Jose de Herrera
Community Member
2 years ago (edited)

Happily this will not be the case as the French Senate requires that Notre-Dame’s spire be rebuilt ‘exactly as it was’ which has already relegated all these abominable concepts in the garbage where they belong.

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Alon Alkalai
Community Member
2 years ago

I love it

Laura Warren
Community Member
2 years ago

I think this one is really pretty. The beam shouldn't be on all the time but maybe it could come on every night at 6:20. Which seems like a weird time but it is the time that the fire alarms first said there was a fire and people looked and didn't find a fire at at 6:45 then they found the fire the second alarm came on and they found it. That could become a tourist thing you know where a point of interest that people wait for that beam to come on and it could just come on for one minute maybe at 6:20 and then again at 6:45 and/or, maybe it could come on the mark the hour, date &time the restoration is complet

Laura Warren
Community Member
2 years ago

Is this the design by the Fukasis'. If it is it is illuminated at night and beautiful. I love it.

John Rodriguez
Community Member
2 years ago

Beautiful and not too shockingly different but with a hint on modern. Kinda like the glass pyramids at the Louvre. Kind of ties the two together in style. ❤️

Carolyn Riddle
Community Member
2 years ago

Simple and understated. However, a glass roof might be really hot in summer. It would alter the experience of dim interior lighting.

patrick mahar
Community Member
2 years ago

The only one that even reflects what a Gothic church should be, however the use of glass in unoriginal, uninspired, incompetent, and will destroy the effect of the interior windows. You my friend, are an incompetent loser.

joel
Community Member
2 years ago

I like it. There's some nitpicks I have, but it's not that bad.

Heinrich Kerzenwachs
Community Member
2 years ago

Only one that is not horrendous

Rhiannon Gibbs
Community Member
2 years ago

You have to rebuild a gothic style spire, anything else would look ridiculous paired with the rest of the building. The glass roof could work well enough if it's kept simple, and allow in natural light if they choose to open up that space to the public. The idea of placing a garden up there isn't bad at all.

未周 陸
Community Member
2 years ago

All right. Reasonable Look ... Nothing too fancy about it ......

Yulanda Bruinink
Community Member
2 years ago

Of all of them this one is the best. So much history with the cathedral and so in my opinion they should try to keep it as close to original as possible.

Mer
Community Member
2 years ago

The least awful? Just so plain, though.

Michelle Wachman
Community Member
2 years ago

Looks natural

Sharon Vaughn
Community Member
2 years ago

Simple, uncomplicated.

Amanda Windsor
Community Member
2 years ago

Boring. Like any local church.

Zsuzsanna Szucs
Community Member
2 years ago

This is the best one...all the others are insane..

Patricia VB
Community Member
2 years ago

I like it. However I have a great idea for the spire that might be more unique and lovely. I wonder what architects I could contact. Or how would I enter this contest? Anyone know?

Jane Alexander
Community Member
2 years ago

This one works

Petra
Community Member
2 years ago

Is this made of glass?

Robert's Palma
Community Member
2 years ago

They should just make a parking garage

Catherine Todd
Community Member
2 years ago (edited)

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Closer to the original roof, but as Rob Chapman says below: "this is the only one on this list that does't look absolutely horrible. But still..." no no no. Why not wood or wood-look beams with glass skylights to preserve the original Medieval design? What is wrong with these people?

Aunt Messy
Community Member
2 years ago

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Boring.

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#2

13 Architects Suggest Notre Dame Cathedral Reconstruction Designs

Architect Vincent Callebaut's vision draws the ideas of science, art, and spirituality together. The architect suggests uniting the cathedral’s nave, roof, and new spire in a project he titled ‘Palingenesis’, derived from the greek word for ‘rebirth’. It features a garden underneath a three-dimensional crystal glass canopy."transparency, sharing, and openness to our society’s development: such are the ideas conveyed by this new, diaphanous forest of notre dame, outlining the new face of the church in the 21st century," Callebaut explained his vision.

Vincent Callebaut Architectures Report

AR Annahita
Community Member
2 years ago

I love it!!

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#3

New Spire Designs

Studio NAB proposes a project that would turn the top of the cathedral into a greenhouse-like structure. The spire, in their vision could house a tower of beehives.

studio NAB Report

KCN
Community Member
2 years ago

This is a joke, right?

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#4

13 Architects Suggest Notre Dame Cathedral Reconstruction Designs

"Our Proposal for the new roof and spire at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris: A Phoenix rises from the ashes. The spire, clad in sand cast copper panels, emerges from the blackened stainless steel roof supported by flame charred glulam trusses in remembrance of what was and what can become."

studiotjoa Report

Linda Early
Community Member
2 years ago

Doesn't look like a phoenix. Looks cheap.

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#5

New Spire Designs

"A proposal by summumarchi gives access to Notre Dame's attic to make it a commemorative park, with purple colors in memory of the fire, while taking advantage of this enormous generosity of donations to make it a sanctuary for animals and insects even more threatened in cities. May this reconstruction serve 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."

summumarchi Report

Elaine Dodge
Community Member
2 years ago

I quite like this one. But not the beam of light out the top. There's too much light pollution as there is and it confuses migratory birds.

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#6

New Spire Designs

Architect Norman Foster proposed turning the cathedral's spire into a “super-slender needle touching heaven’s clouds”. It would give the structure more light, reflecting the contemporary architecture.

Norman Foster Report

Matt York
Community Member
2 years ago

stop trying to futurize a historical building

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#7

New Spire Designs

alex_nerovnya Report

Draw to be Brave
Community Member
2 years ago

No

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#8

New Spire Designs

"This subject is very sensitive for reasons that are easily understood. The wood that the construction was made out of as well as its assemblages and age make it a remarkable and honorable creation. It is hard to imagine that there would be another option than rebuilding the identical roof structure and the roof by using all the documents we have. Just like the castle of Guédelon, that is being rebuilt using the knowledge of our ancestors, Notre-Dame de Paris could also become a huge open-air educational project. In a few decades, this tragic episode would fade and as a result we would have a brand new roof of the Cathedral. But if we think about it, would we really be satisfied with this result? What other pleasure would we find besides that of comforting us in the certainty that everything is eternal?"

godart_roussel_architectes Report

Matt York
Community Member
2 years ago

this looks like it belongs in Dubai

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#9

New Spire Designs

"Our proposal for the restoration of the Notre Dame Cathedral is to use one element that it has the best, the stained glass.
Make all the cover in stained glass, including the tower, with transparency to the inner side, through the opening of the vaults, leaving only the structures flying buttresses.
In Gothic there is the connection of the earth to the sky, and inside the Cathedral, the natural illumination multiplies in colors through the filter of the cover in stained glass.
At night the inner illumination turns into a grandiose retro backlit coverage."

alexandre_fantozzi Report

Elaine Dodge
Community Member
2 years ago

Eeeek, gaudily wrapped Christmas present. NO!

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#10

New Spire Designs

"NOUVELLE DAME - Proposal for a new cover of Notre Dame, París"

poa.estudio Report

Nia Loves Art
Community Member
2 years ago

Looks like a cross between a Marvel space embassy and American megachurch.

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#11

New Spire Designs

fuksas_architects Report

Nia Loves Art
Community Member
2 years ago

Let it go, let it go...

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#12

13 Architects Suggest Notre Dame Cathedral Reconstruction Designs

"Upward motion, an idea of mine for Notre Dame’s spire"

honored_art Report

The Girl on Fire
Community Member
2 years ago

Why? It's literally just a spike.....

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#13

New Spire Designs

"Today the French architecture board website reads, ’Heritage, ancient or contemporary, is a revealing and structuring element of our culture, and we must inculcate ourselves to keep alive these markers but also built today the markers of our time’.Ultimately, I trust in France’s cultural core and its decision makers to have the audacity to move forward while retaining The Lady’s timeless image. I can only hope the project will be humble but innovative, delicate, beautiful and engaged,created by highly skilled people around a common table."

deroodavid Report

Elaine Dodge
Community Member
2 years ago

That weird sheeting looks like it's covering some of the exterior architecture. Why on earth would you do that?

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#14

13 Architects Suggest Notre Dame Cathedral Reconstruction Designs

"Some say that we should rebuild the spire as it was originally. Others say that we should design a new one. So, let’s build a new one as it was... 8 days ago"

mathieulehanneur Report

The Girl on Fire
Community Member
2 years ago

This is a joke, right?

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#15

New Spire Designs

"A single element used, stained glass. No new architectural features, no intervention elements (redesign), no ego, no artistic aspirations.
The material specified for this, stained glass, is made of a high-tech glass produced by a renowned and traditional French factory. The glasses have sun protection, without changing the desired aesthetic.
The windows offer greater thermal comfort inside the Cathedral, greater natural light, reduces external noise."

alexandre_fantozzi Report

Elaine Dodge
Community Member
2 years ago

NO! That looks like really ugly Christmas wrapping paper! Gag.

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#16

New Spire Designs

"It’s a tragedy. Nothing would ever return over 850 years of beauty, but it's time to [rebirth] Notre-Dame. In Gothic times builders [tried] to reach the sky, Le Duc [tried] it also in 19th century and have come closer. Now it's possible to make it happen. Lightweight crown that connects heaven with earth."

vizumatelier Report

Elaine Dodge
Community Member
2 years ago

Oh look, the sky's leaking milk into the cathedral

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#17

Notre-Dame-Cathedral-New-Spire-Designs

kissthearchitect Report

Elaine Dodge
Community Member
2 years ago

NONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONO!!!!!!!!! Oh, hang on... this is a joke, right. In that case... bwahahahahaha!

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