The renovation of the Cathédrale Notre Dame de Paris has taken a postive step forward, thanks to 200 tons of scaffolding that has been removed from the damaged landmark.

The famous cathedral was devastated by fire in April 2019, and the country set a five-year goal for the reconstruction of its spire and a large part of the roof. The scaffolding was present because the building was under construction at the time of the fire, and experts overseeing the renovations were afraid removing it might cause more damage to the structure.

Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris on January 6, 2020, covered in scaffolding with a crane in front and birds overhead
The reconstruction of the cathedral is gathering pace © Philippe Lopez/AFP via Getty Images

Thankfully although the scaffolding had contorted due to the heat, it was successfully taken off, according to a post on the cathedral's Instagram account. While it was speculated that the restoration might include a modern spire or rooftop garden, French president, Emmanuel Macron, confirmed that the famous landmark is being restored to its “last known visual state," in line with a bill passed by the French Senate.

Man watching Notre-Dame de Paris fire from far, Paris, Ile-de-France, France
Fire devastated the cathedral in April 2019 © Aziz Ary Neto/Getty Images

The renovation work is now continuing, although it was delayed for a time when work ceased due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is hoped that the renovations will be completed by 2024. The archaeological crypt below the cathedral reopened in September with a new exhibition, 17 months after the fire. The crypt itself wasn't affected by the blaze, but remained closed as it had to undergo lead-dust decontamination.

The forecourt of the cathedral reopened to the public in June, after deep-cleaning of the toxic dust that spread around the public plaza and Rue du Parvis. Keep up to date with the cathedral's developments on its Instagram page here.

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