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Some years ago I read somewhere that cut stone that had been in a fire was no longer reliable for use in substantial construction. I don't know why that should be the case, and I don't know how authoritive that pronouncement was, but if that is true, restoring Notre Dame is going to involve a lot more work than rebuilding the roof and spire.
My experience has long been that thoughtful restoration takes much longer and costs far more than new construction, but that hurried renovation costs even more in the long term. Building a new roof on overstressed walls could prove to be a bit of an embarrassment.
by Andhakari on Thu Apr 18th, 2019 at 07:55:54 AM EST
According tho the architect responsible ofr the the restorations of St. Mels Cathedral in Longford after a fire in 2009,

"The effect the fire had on the stone is probably the most important thing. Different stones are affected differently by fire. Granite is a much stronger stone and it survives the fire very easily; marble, which would be found on altar areas and the steps - it turns into a kind of sugar and so it crumbles in your fingers," he said.

"Limestone actually opens up like a book...The stone that was mostly used, from having been there before, is a limestone, a Caen limestone predominantly on the outer surface, but the walls on the inside would be quite different. I don't know what stone is on the inside but it is a softer stone than St Mel's."

Mr Redmond added water damage to the cathedral, which celebrated its 850th anniversary in 2013, would likely be "considerable".

"The thing is to allow it to dry slowly. If you were to go in with dehumidifiers or heating in there, the timber could distort and so forth," he added.

The restoration of St. Mel's - a much smaller provincial cathedral - took 5 years and cost €30 Million.

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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Apr 18th, 2019 at 02:11:49 PM EST
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