On Monday evening, the French Senate dashed hopes for a modernized Notre Dame when they passed a restoration bill mandating that the landmark be rebuilt to its "last known visual state" before the roof and spire was damaged by fire last month.
The decision marks a major turning point in the heated ongoing debate over whether the cathedral should be rebuilt as it was, or if the 856-year-old building should be modernized.
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After French president Emmanuel Macron’s suggested "an inventive reconstruction" and Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced an international competition to redesign the cathedral’s main spire, architects and designers from around the world have offered up fantastical designs for the reconstruction of Notre Dame’s roof.
Popular proposals include Studio NAB’s urban greenhouse, Foster + Partners’ completely glazed roof and spire, and Studio Fuksas’ proposal for a roof made of Baccarat crystal.
Despite the proliferation of creative proposals, the majority of the French public polled in a survey reported by France 24 would likely support the French Senate’s mandate. According to the survey, only a quarter of French adults polled supported a reconstruction with a modern "architectural gesture."
The Senate’s modifications to the bill will be reviewed in a joint session between the French National Assembly and the Senate next Tuesday before the bill can become law.
Related Reading: 8 New Spire Designs That Could Crown the Notre Dame Cathedral