France Notre Dame

Workers install Notre Dame de Paris cathedral’s Croix du Chevet in front of the cathedral spire Friday. Thibault Camus/Associated Press

PARIS — The cross at the apse of Notre Dame de Paris, which survived the devastating 2019 fire, was reinstalled atop the cathedral’s framework Friday after a meticulous restoration by artistic ironworkers from Normandy.

The imposing cross, spanning 12 meters and weighing 1.5 tons, is the only element of the choir roof that resisted the flames.

Approximately 250 companies and hundreds of craftsmen, architects, and professionals have contributed to the ongoing restoration project, aiming for the cathedral’s reopening on December 8, 2024.

The fire, which occurred on April 15, 2019, caused the collapse of Notre Dame’s spire and part of its roof. Five years later, the restoration has made significant progress, including the reinstallation of the spire’s lead-covered needle.

The 2019 fire was a significant blow to the cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage site and a symbol of Christianity that welcomed 12 million visitors each year.

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