The New Scottish Parliament Building Project

The United Kingdom of Great Britain was formed in 1707 as per the provisions of the Treaty of Union, merging the two separate countries of Scotland and England. The enactment of the Scotland Act 1998 and the Devolution of 1999, once again made possible the formation of a separate Scottish Parliament. The perceptible need for a separate building for the Parliament resulted in the Holyrood, site being chosen for the construction of, what was, in Donald Dewar’s words, a purpose-built parliament offered to make a statement about Scotland’s future(White amp.Sidhu, p 6). Though the Scottish Parliament Building Project, was fated to land itself in a series of controversies, resulting in its price tag continuing to rise beyond comprehension1, leading to what critics of the Project consider as the greatest fiasco ever that has happened in recent Scottish history, the fact remains that this magnificent building symbolizes the rebirth of a nation. The Genesis of the fiasco lay in Westminster, in the pay-as-you-go contracts signed by U.K. Ministers much before the Scottish parliament had ever been elected. 2 The crucial decision to adopt the high-risk Construction management Route was taken unilaterally by the Project Manager without, without a proper evaluation. 3 The appointment of Bovis, the highest tenderer as Construction Manager smacked of favoritism on several counts. The feasibility studies were merely indicative in nature and did not represent the actual costs. Even at the time of designer competition, no tentative cost estimate was made, but undue reliance was placed on the verbal assertions of the architectural joint to budgetary compliance. (Fraser, Para 4.51) In addition, the Time-table was too tight and unrealistic.