This week, people from around the globe watched in horror as one of the world’s most iconic landmarks, the Notre Dame Cathedral, was up in flames causing irreversible damage. So in this week’s Property Portal, HEKKTA takes a closer look at the incident and see how the world has responded.

A blaze broke out throughout the building at around 7pm and it took a whole nine hours to tame the flames, which severely damaged the building including completely destroying the famous spire. Constructed in the 12th and 13th centuries, the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris is considered one the world’s finest examples of gothic architecture and also a building of incredible religious and historic significance.

Macron has responded emphasising the, “emotion of a whole nation”. How the blaze started is still being investigated, but it is not thought to be a case of arson, rather the just a result of weaknesses in the building. A restoration project is now fully underway, with private donors coming out from all over the globe pledging vast sums to the cause, as the money raised hits the €800m mark.

Notre Dame Cathedral
Notre Dame Cathedral

A competition has been launched for architects to design the new spire to replace the one that burned down in the blaze. The brief was for a new spire “adapted to the techniques and the challenges of our era”, rather than re-creating the old.

Critical voices have been raised, however, at the reaction of some to the Notre Dame blaze, questioning where the millions were when Grenfell burned down? The money raised would also be ample to completely clear the huge pacific ocean plastic mass that is causing so much damage to the ocean’s ecosystems. The tradegy of the blaze should not be underestimated, but the rapid manner in which such enormous sums of money were raised does pose question marks over how seriously other crises are really being taken.

In a very weird coincidence, at the same time that Notre Dame was ablaze, the Al-Aqsa Mosque, one of the holiest sites in Islam at the centre of the Old City in Jerusalem, too caught fire with the blaze starting at the Al-Marwani Prayer Hall. The Dome of the Rock, as it is also known, is one of the most important pieces of Islamic architecture built 1,300 years ago. The third shrine of Islam, Muslim prayers were directed to the Al-Aqsa Mosque before the direction changed to Mecca. Fortunately, the blaze did not cause extensive damage and was put out by firefighters effectively.

Al-Aqsa Mosque - HEKKTA - Notre Dame
Al-Aqsa Mosque – HEKKTA – Notre Dame

Jeanne Gang has been named in the Top 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine, the only architect to make the list.

Brooklyn’s tallest building designed by KPF has just topped out, with stunning view of Manhattan. Brooklyn Point is a mixed-use program of apartments, food, shopping, and entertainment functions which will allow for slightly cheaper prices than those charged on the opposite island.

Brooklyn Point - HEKKTA - Notre Dame
Brooklyn Point – HEKKTA – Notre Dame

San Francisco is facing a rising homeless crisis, as software tycoons make up 50% of all house sales made in 2018, driving prices up. City workers in finance, biotechnology, real estate and healthcare companies are also contributing to unaffordable prices for many San Fran natives, who have been forced out their homes into RVs or different neighbourhoods. San Francisco has 1.25% of all homeless Americans, one of the worst rates in the country.

BIG mimic dominoes in their latest addition to the University of Massachusetts. The elegant design will house the new 70,000-square-foot Business Innovation Hub.

It has emerged that housebuilders are sitting on enough land to build 800,000 new homes, prompting questions over how effectively the housing crisis is being dealt with.

The City of London has named the winners of its general major construction framework covering projects across the capital, with a dozen firms securing spots to work on the two lot framework that will run for four years and covers an estate of more than 800 properties, both inside and outside of the Square Mile.

Using a combination of recycled materials, Danish firm Lendager Group have created a series of townhouses using recycled concrete, repurposed double-glazing and discarded flooring boards. Concrete dominated, the windows were taken from old buildings and 850 tonnes of concrete was cast on site, using refuse from the construction of the Copenhagen Metro.

Upcycle Studios - HEKKTA - Notre Dame
Upcycle Studios – HEKKTA – Notre Dame

Irish commercial property has been experiencing a boom, with Asian investors taking a particular liking, buying up almost €160 million worth of property in the first three months of the year. A total of €365 million was spent by overseas investors, with Asian investors counting for 43 per cent of it.