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Govt to redevelop Parliament building or build new one by 2022

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

The Monsoon Session of Parliament in 2022 will be held in a newly-developed Parliament building, government sources said on Thursday.

The project to build a composite complex for various ministries will also kick off very soon, besides the redevelopment of the Central Vista, a 3-km stretch from the Rashtrapati Bhavan, North and South Block to the India Gate, they said.

The government has invited design and architecture firms from across the globe for consultancy works by floating of a request for proposal (RFP) on September 2 for the "development or redevelopment of Parliament Building, Common Central Secretariat and Central Vista."

These new iconic structures will be a legacy for 150 to 200 years at the very least, according to the RFP.

Consultants should adhere to Central Vista Committee and Lutyens' Bungalow Zone guidelines while carrying out consultancy work for the redevelopment of the Central Vista, it stated.

Sources in the Union housing and urban affairs ministry said the Parliament House building was completed in 1927 and its facilities and infrastructure are "inadequate" to meet the current demand.

There is an "acute shortage" of office space and there are no chambers for MPs in the Parliament building. The situation will further aggravate if there is an increase in the number of seats, they said.

"By August 15, 2022, when India celebrates its 75th Independence Day, it will have a new Parliament building. The Monsoon Session of the Parliament in August 2022 will be held in a new or a retrofitted building," a source said.

The sources said that by next year, the Central Vista will be redeveloped and the common Central Secretariat will be built by 2024.

There is an imperative need to redesign and redevelop the existing Parliament building with the same outer faade or construct a new state-ofthe-art building located in the vicinity, they said.

"The government has not yet decided whether a new Parliament building will be built or the existing one will be redeveloped at the same place," the source said.

On the development of the Central Secretariat, the sources in the ministry said it is currently spread over 47 buildings in Lutyens' Delhi, housing various ministries, departments where 70,000 employees of the central government work.

"The government currently spends around Rs 1,000 crore annually to facilitate the functioning of offices of various ministries. If there is a common Central Secretariat, this money can be saved," the source said.

On the redevelopment of the Central Vista, the sources said most of the buildings in the area are more than 40 to 50 years old and have either "outlived" or approaching their structural lives.

The entire Central Vista area will be designed with smart city features to the extent possible, including upgrade of public facilities, amenities and parking, as per a plan.

"Besides, buildings constructed over 100 years ago such as the North and South blocks are not earthquake safe. There is shortage of working spaces, parking, amenities and services.

"The spread of central government ministries and departments in different locations leads to inefficiencies and difficulty in coordination," the source added.

A CPWD official said architects Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker planned the Central Vista of New Delhi and it has the Rashtrapati Bhawan, Parliament House, North and South Block and India Gate among others.

These iconic buildings were constructed between 1911-1931, the year in which the new capital was inaugurated. Thereafter no major building of such exemplary architecture has been constructed.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, September 12 2019. 19:35 IST
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