What is the name of the Scottish Parliament building

New Scottish Parliament building in Edinburgh

The Scottish chief architect Gordon McGregor draws a wide arc when it comes to "his" house: The new building on a former brewery site on the outskirts of the city is to represent all of Scotland in the future - the lush green of the hills off the Atlantic coast, the difficult history underneath British sovereignty, the Scottish traditions of his country, including the once forbidden national language Gaelic.

This is demonstrated with exuberant self-confidence - full of childlike pride in the immediate vicinity of the official Scottish seat of the British Queen. And by the way, they also occupied the historic site at the end of the Royal Mile, where the dramas about Mary Stuart, the last Scottish queen, are said to have taken place.

The symbolic cornerstone of the parliament building is Queenbury House from the fateful 17th century of the Scottish defeat. The route that Scottish MEPs will take to the office every day in the future runs through the lavishly restored building. Where it was successful, the old masonry was exposed to create a stark contrast to the futuristic new building, which mainly consists of four basic materials: Scottish granite with inlaid Scottish oak, deeply curved glass roofs and bare concrete walls - that seems strange at first glance, it should too. Because Enric Miralles, the Spanish architect, whose complicated design three quarters of the MPs had approved in 1998 and who would prefer a simpler domicile today, wanted to represent the history of Scotland with it. Broken, rearing, visionary:

The structure of the old town consists of the main streets with acute-angled alleys, courtyards, dead ends and this old structure should be reflected in the building for the MPs and completed at the same time, because then in the direction of the hill the building is broken open in its geometric shape, builds one relationship to the landscape becomes lower.

The lower, teardrop-shaped assembly buildings - metaphorically protected by the public visitor area and the semicircular media tower - face the impressive natural backdrop of the rust-red rock fall of Salisbury Crags. When the exterior work is finished in a few days, the green should even crawl into the two entrance halls. No wonder that the high symbolic claim of the architectural design wonder inspires mockery:

We call these the chicken windows. From the outside they look like chickens with open bills, but are actually bay windows. The design is still from Enric. He said it would be a good place for the MSPs to retreat to, in a small private room with a view of the old town and the countryside, out into the clouds.

The fact that the costs skyrocketed when the decision was made for the extravagant building is more of a concern for the Scots and an investigative committee than for the actual building. With 431Mill. Pounds including 100 million for the latest safety standards, the costs are 10 times higher than planned. This means that Scotland not only has the most modern parliament building - visited by numerous state delegations - but also the most expensive in the world. Evil tongues speak of the fact that the building has degenerated into a mausoleum for the Spanish architect Miralles, who suddenly died 4 years ago, the maximalist and "troublemaker among Barcelona architects".
Architect Gordon McGregor just waves it off:

Well, the cost thing is very complicated. Lord Fraser is currently preparing an investigation report on it, no it is not easy to answer. The building itself is already very complicated. Just think of the many different contracts for the individual building sections, then the price increases in 6 years, problems with the implementation of the design walls and roofs and a thousand other factors. In our opinion, the main problem was that the official cost estimate was simply set too low at the beginning, so that the current costs simply had to be higher.

Despite all the criticism, the Scottish Parliament building is a masterpiece of allusions. A building that can not only be interpreted several times, but also structurally depicts the difficulties of democracy. And as presumptuous as the new state parliament appears up close, it blends in with the cityscape so inconspicuously. If in a few years the oak wood will have weathered typically gray, then the building will slowly take on the colors of the adjacent old town houses.