Four years ago, the iconic Notre-Dame de Paris went up in flames, causing massive damage to the roof and spire of the world-famous cathedral.
The mammoth reconstruction project initiated in the aftermath of the fire saw a number of companies - such as French companies including AXA, BNP Paribas, and JCDecaux promising sums of between 10 million and 20 millions euros each.
Even US companies like companies like Apple and Disney have given millions of dollars in donations to help with this rebuild in Paris.
Other US firms - a number of them IT companies - have opted to contribute their technology, technical expertise and funds to ensure the Notre Dame cathedral was restored to its original magnificence.
Contributing their expertise and Building Information Modelling (BIM) technology to support the project, one company, American multinational software maker Autodesk engaged reality-capture and digital reconstruction firm AGP to create a detailed 3D digital model of the Notre Dame cathedral as it existed before the catastrophic event. The project combined Autodesk software and AGP’s data from earlier scans of Notre-Dame.
Combining their earlier work with new laser scanning, photogrammetry, and drone footage after the fire, AGP was able to capture a complete view of the cathedral. Because of the complexity, structural details, and sheer size of Notre-Dame, it took Autodesk and AGP over a year to create the full-scale model, which was an unrivalled example of historical modelling using BIM technology.
Autodesk donated the BIM model and their software to Établissement public Rebâtir Notre-Dame de Paris, the public institution dedicated to the conservation and restoration of the cathedral, to be used by the restoration teams. Through an official patronage, Autodesk is contributing design and construction solutions, including BIM and technical expertise to enhance collaboration, clarity, and efficiency across the teams working on the reconstruction effort.
The president of Rebâtir Notre-Dame de Paris, Army General Jean-Louis Georgelin said, “Using digital technologies designed for the supervision and management of the restoration site is essential for the public institution.”
SETEC opency, the company managing the planning and construction of the site employed the 3D model created with Autodesk’s BIM solutions to quickly understand the constraints of the site.
“Having the 3D building information model significantly increased the accuracy and speed of the process, two necessary elements to reopen by the end of 2024. Autodesk’s technology has been crucial to the work we are doing to rebuild the spire, along with integrating new technical safety and comfort elements,” says Yvan Rouard, director of the Building Division at SETEC opency.