Condition: Good condition
Type: Public building
Location: Holyrood, Edinburgh, EH99 1SP
Few buildings divide opinion as profoundly as Scotland’s new parliament. A hard fought architectural competition brought together Enric Miralles of Barcelona-based EMBT with what was then one of the world’s largest architectural practices, RMJM.
The landscape moves in, around and over the structure, deftly marking the transition between Edinburgh’s Old Town and the Queen’s Park behind. With the restored Queensberry House at its heart, the parliament combines three buildings of quite distinct character, from all angles, full of variety and intrigue. The lack of orthogonals imbues every room with interest. The two main gathering spaces, the Parliament Chamber and the Garden Lobby, revel in Enric Miralles’s shape-making.
Despite Miralles’s untimely death in 2000, a sometimes difficult marriage of practices undoubtedly delivered the icon to which he aspired. With all its richness, the building will, in time, be recognised as one of the great works of European architecture of this, or indeed any other, century.
by Neil Baxter
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