A German church which had its spire destroyed during World War II is to finally get a futuristic LED replacement more than half a century later.
The Sacred-Heart-Church in the Derendorf borough of Dusseldorf, the capital of the western German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, suffered heavy damage to its roof as a result of fire by Allied bombardments in World War II.
A whirlwind which hit Dusseldorf just after the war in 1945 then blew off the wooden spire from the church, which at 335 feet was at the time the highest structure in the city located on the banks of the River Rhine.
While the church and its roof were repaired after the war, the spire of the church was never restored to its former glory as architects decided to top off the church tower with a flat roof instead of the old spire.
But the city authorities have now decided to put back the old spire on top of the church in an unconventional way.
Instead of rebuilding the spire they have set up an LED installation which recreates the shape of the old spire in blue lights.
Light show producer Klaus Gendrung even managed to create the installation with only 250 watts.
The idea is based on the famous Rhine Comet, a similar light art installation on top of the giant Rheinturm (Rhine Tower) on the banks of the River Rhine
Yet unlike the Rhine Comet, which is only lit up on special occasions, the light installation on the Sacred-Heart-Church will be permanently visible on every evening in the Dusseldorf skies.
The modern solution has even won praise from the Vatican.
Curia Cardinal Robert Sarah said: “The idea of a simulation of the octahedron spire with light beams is like a symbol of the Christian Occident that does not only shows the urbanistic location as a landmark in the north of Dusseldorf, it also illuminates to some extent the whole world.”
The project was sponsored in equal parts by a local bank, a real estate company and an architect’s bureau.