News from AU
April 14, 2020

Notre Dame One Year After the Fire: Reconstruction and Reimagination

April 15, 2020 marks the one-year anniversary of the fire that nearly destroyed the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. In the wake of the event, archaeologists, geologists, chemists, and other scientists have been working to analyze the damage—not only to repair it, but also to better understand how the cathedral was built, who built it, and what lies underneath.

Architects and engineers have been undertaking their own studies of the iconic structure, as detailed in our recent article, Digitizing History: Preserving and Recreating Heritage Sites with Digital Tools. Using Revit, BIM 360, laser scanning, and other tools, Andrew Milburn and others are digitally modeling Notre Dame as it was before the fire, contributing information important for its recreation and preservation.

Model of Notre Dame
Using BIM and other tools, architects and engineers are creating a digital model of the Notre Dame Cathedral as it was before the April 2019 fire. Image courtesy of Andrew Milburn.

Want to learn more about how to protect, preserve, and reconstruct vital structures around the world? Check out this related learning:

Rebuilding with BIM—In Parametric Modeling of Vaults for Notre Dame in Revit, Alfredo Medina, a collaborator of Andrew Milburn’s, shows you step-by-step how to create an adaptive parametric Revit family that represents a crossed vault used in the ceiling of the Notre Dame Cathedral.

Capturing reality—When it comes to understanding the built world, there’s no substitute for reality capture with LiDAR and photogrammetry. Point clouds of Notre Dame made before the fire provide invaluable tools for rebuilding. These AU classes show you the workflows that make it possible and how to apply them to your own projects:

Retrofitting informal housing—Grand cathedrals aren’t the only structures that can benefit from BIM and other digital tools. Across the developing world, millions of people live in substandard houses that are vulnerable to collapse during earthquakes and other natural disasters. In Scaling Up BIM for Resilience: Automated Designs to Retrofit Informal Housing, Nicolas Ortiz Abello shows how he and his team at Build Change are digitizing and automating the process of retrofitting housing, enabling them to work more quickly than they ever could with manual processes.

And that's just the beginning. Visit the AU website for hundreds of related classes, articles, and videos. Learn anytime—when you're ready, we're ready.