In 1922 it was decided to convert an uncompleted Normandie class battleship into an aircraft carrier. Plans for the HMS Eagle were used to help design the Béarn.
The hull armor was reduced.
The geared turbines drove the inner shafts and the reciprocating engines the outer shafts.
The engine exhaust went out through the island.
There were two 50' x 50' elevators and a single 27' x 40' elevator installed in the flight deck. The flight deck was 51' above the waterline.
There was a crane aft of the starboard island.
The hangar was 405' / 406' 9" long.
There were workshops and additional storage for aircraft under the hangar deck.