Issued on: Modified:
After a wildfire on April 15 that consumed its roof and spire, Pariss Notre-Dame Cathedral is undergoing massive repair work. The site remains closed to the public but rare access inside the cathedral has been granted to see how things are coming along, and to get a sense of the task that still lies ahead.
Once inside Notre-Dame, there is a quiet stillness. The floor of the nave has been cleared except for some piles of gravel. It rains inside the church.
One has to look up to understand just how much work has to be done. There are gaping holes in the vaults of the ceiling, twisted piles of burned metal and wood, and at the summit, partially burned scaffolding towers overhead, still in danger of collapsing. The 300-ton structure must be reinforced before it can be taken down slowly, piece by piece, a process expected to take until June.
In front of the cathedral, tents shelter much of the precious debris. Tens of thousands of pieces of stone and some metal that archeologists are in the process of restoring.