The installation of the wooden supports under the vaults of Notre-Dame will begin in February 2021, the final stage in the phase of securing the site, which must end in July. The Paris police prefect will then be able to lift the decree of danger affecting the cathedral, even if, since the scaffolding was removed, the building's balance is no longer really threatened.
What is needed to finalize the last phase of securing the site of the emblematic cathedral of the French capital, are some imposing structural elements: wooden support vaults, made in Meurthe-et-Moselle, three hundred kilometers from the capital.
The company Le Bras Frères, in Jarny, has carried out the work with all the necessary thoroughness, using a digital tool that replaced the compass of the Middle Ages: “We draw the structural elements that take the form of the vaults, they are truly to the millimeter, because when we go into the field, we are not going to recut the wood, the part must really fit into the vault,” specifies Damien Brisson, technical director of the Jarny company.
At the end of January 2021, fifty-two wooden support vaults left the Le Bras workshop for Paris, for the purpose of reinforcing each of the five stone vaults of the cathedral that were weakened or damaged, or sometimes gutted by the collapse of the spire during the fire of April 15-16, 2019.
Assembly at the cathedral will begin in February 2021, thirty meters above the void: the supports will have been previously mounted under the vaults using hydraulic jacks.
“After shoring the vaults, we will have completed the phase of securing the monument,” said General Jean-Louis Georgelin, who chairs the public establishment responsible for the conservation and restoration of Notre-Dame.
A phase which should end next July, paving the way for the restoration of the building: but it will be a new project, the contours of which have not yet been definitively defined.