The People's Notre-Dame Design Competition

Max Yang, Stephanie Hutani

Maxthreads Architecture and Urban Design

Taiwan

Designer's Description

As a historical icon of Paris and the center of religious activities, Notre Dame brings different kinds of people together. People come here along with their own individual intentions; some come to sight see and some other come to attend religious procession. Because of these purposes, people don’t pay as much attention to the church anymore; what it needs and the stories it holds. The massive fire that happened contributes a darker story to Notre Dame’s journey. As a historical icon, preservation is vital; however, as an active part of the present city, Notre Dame also needs to embrace some new future transformation. The accident happened and we shouldn’t shy away from it because it is now a new part of Notre Dame’s history. The concept is to make the attic a space for the church to express its story and manifest its characteristics. The roof is made out of light-weight concrete shell, which represents gothic style, alternated with glass, which represents contemporary concept. The space is designed similar to a cloister with medieval style curved columns made out of the trendy white terrazzo stones. We acknowledge the ruins caused by the fire as the story teller of Notre Dame and we will keep them on the excavated area of the floor to let visitors commemorate and immerse themselves fully in the unfortunate accident that has happened. There will be a spiral staircase in the center of the attic as an access to the sight-seeing platform of the spire. The left wing and right wing of the attic are designated to showcase antique religious items that the church holds. This area will provide the visitor with new insights and historical knowledge of Notre Dame. The spire will remain gothic with an extra touch of modern materials such as: concrete, black metal, and terrazzo stones. The whole design is a fragmental experience of documentation, multiple realities, and interpretation of the past events happening inside the church. The space is designed to narrate the journey of the Church itself.

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