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It's a thin line where the patina of age on Europe's countless monuments gives way to the onset of neglect.If even an iconic building like Notre Dame could not be protected from devastation, if such a potent symbol of France had to scramble for maintenance funds, that lays bare a culture of apathy that can undermine a shared history as well as the multibillion-dollar tourism industry upon which much of Europe depends.All too often, fires happen during restoration work.The Glasgow School of Art's Mackintosh Building was gutted by fire last year for the second time in four years as it neared the end of a multimillion-pound (dollar) restoration project.The fire at Notre Dame had barely been doused when two of France's richest men, rival billionaires, stepped up with flashy, competing donations of hundreds of millions of euros to rebuild the Paris cathedral. Notre Dame donations now stand at over 1 billion euros ($1.12 billion) or about three years of France's national restoration budget.Tourism in Britain and France alone amounts to about 7 percent of their gross domestic product, good for around 150 billion euros and 170 billion euros a year.
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