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Parliament plans to move to a new glass assembly in the communist-era 'Party House'

Post Time:Feb 04,2009Classify:Industry NewsView:369

Bulgaria's MPs are to abandon the current National Assembly to relocate to the former Bulgarian Communist Party headquarters, commonly known as the Party House, where they will host their plenary sessions in a large glass hall. Plans are for the move to happen in the next two to three years.

On January 29 2009, a parliamentary committee approved the relocation plan. Bulgarian taxpayers will have to pay between seven million and 29 million leva, depending on which one of seven plans for the relocation the Government chooses.

Theoretically, the plan is supposed to be approved by members of all political parties.

A commission consisting of Bulgarian and foreign specialists headed by Sofia chief architect Petar Dikov has chosen the candidates.

First in the rankings so far is the plan put forward by Tilev Architects, to cost 18.520 million leva, followed closely by Atelie Serafimov with a price tag of 29 million leva. The third most popular scheme for the moment is the one presented by Atelie Uzunov, costing 13 million leva.

Gradski Daily reported that Belgian technical director of the Flemish parliament, Kurt de Vriend, said that in his opinion the Bulgarian national assembly should be held in an "overt glass hall, open to the Bulgarian public...a symbol of transparency and honesty from Bulgarian MPs".

Consequently, not only Parliament but the entire process has to be transparent - thus a scheduled exposition in Zala Sofia (Sofia Hall) where all the ideas will be presented to the public.

The idea for the relocation of Parliament is a decade old, but it was only last year that the matter was finally set in motion.

The current Parliament building was built in the 19th Century, and one of the proposed ideas for the future of the building is for it to be used as a parliamentary museum.

Experts insist that ultimately it would be cheaper for Parliament to relocate altogether and get the matter over with than constantly funnel money into the current building, which has to battle not only the ultimate test of time, but ever increasing capacity demand, human traffic and "political pressure".

The official entrance of the new Parliament will face Alexander I  Square. Should the plans be approved quickly, the design chosen without procrastination and the process given the go-ahead, experts believe that the idea for the new Parliament will be implemented by the end of 2011, in the most pessimistic scenario, by 2014.

Source: sofiaecho.comAuthor: shangyi

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