Notre Dame crypt in Paris opens to visitors after more than a year of fire accident
After remaining closed for over an year, the crypt beneath Paris’ Notre Dame was finally reopened to visitors last week. The crypt was shut down after a devastating fire incident in April 2019. The fire did not touch the crypt, however, the building was badly affected.
It nearly took the cleaning crew an entire year to sweep out the toxic debris. According to the chief curator of the crypt, the fire was terrible and there was toxic lead everywhere. The curator further said, “Molds and micro-organisms spread, because we had to turn off the ventilation system. So today is an important moment, a very moving moment of renewal and hope for us.”
On its reopening day, an exhibit chronicling the golden history of the ancient cathedral was put on for the public. The exhibit primarily focused on the renowned French poet Victor Hugo, who wrote the character of the Hunchback of Notre Dame, and the famous architect Eugene Viollet-Le-Duc, the one who designed the iconic gothic spire at the cathedral.
The display also features pictures of the mid-19th century construction of the spire. One can also see ancient remains of ramparts and thermal baths that were discovered in Paris. Also, on display are remains from the archaeological excavation of Ile de la Cite, the island where the cathedral stands.
Interestingly, the crypt is not connected to the cathedral and lies beneath the public plaza in front of the church. As per reports, the exhibit will run till 2022 while the cathedral itself remains closed.
Emmanuel Macron, the French President is hoping to restore the old church completely before 2024 (Paris’s year to host the prestigious Olympics games).