Holyrood extension attacked by Miralles widow

The new extension will be added to the front of the building. Picture: Kenny Smith
The new extension will be added to the front of the building. Picture: Kenny Smith
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THE widow of Enric Miralles, the architect behind the Scottish Parliament at Holyrood, has joined those hitting out at the addition of new security features to the multi-million pound building.

Benedetta Tagliabue applied to design the £6.5million extension to the Parliament, designed to increase security at the building’s entrance, but her bid failed to make the shortlist of architects for the project.

The plans which were subsequently approved have been attacked by a range of Holyrood politicians, with former presiding officer Lord Steel describing the new design as “just sticking a block in front of (the building)”.

Speaking to the Edinburgh Evening News, Tagliabue said: “I believe buildings are alive and when you want to make a change you have to change in the same symphony.

“The building was finished in 2004. It’s not so long ago, you could say this is still part of the process of construction.”

Independent MSP Margo MacDonald added her voice to the criticism, saying: “I don’t think we need this. This wasn’t people in the Scottish parliament that came up with this, this was an MI5 guy.”

Miss Tagliabue is visiting the building in Edinburgh today, and will later give a speech at Strathclyde University in Glasgow where she will argue for protection of her late husband’s design.

The final cost of the Scottish Parliament building was £414million, and the building has been dogged by problems throughout its nine-year lifespan.

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