Scottish ParliamentEdinburgh, Scotland
The competition, won by Enric Miralles in 1998, was to select an architect to work with in developing the project, not for a finished design.
The brief was still being developed recognizing that the client would change in 1999 when the new Parliament came into being.
Structures covered with grass will run right up to the edge of the Debating Chamber building emphasizing the impression of the Parliament "sitting in the land".
Garden paths and a series of ponds link all the buildings to the landscape around the four acre site.
The Queensberry House, a 17th century "A" listed building located on the site, is being refurbished as part of the project.
The windows are stainless steel, framed in oak, with latice oak sunscreens on some of the windows.
Externally the building is clad in a mosaic of materials. Kemnay granite from Aberdeenshire is prominent and sits beside a darker granite from South Africa. Miralles liked the sparkle of the Kemnay granite.
A double line of tall, slender steel columns, incased in concrete, rises from the basement to support the floor of the debating chamber cantilevered out high above.
The ceiling consists of three concrete vaults. Each vault was cast on site and features Enric Miralles' abstract designs of the saltire cross (the Scottish flag). All the exposed concrete in the building is so fine that it has a silky sheen to it.
The Public, Press and Guest galleries are on the next level.
At gallery level there are views out over the landscaping towards the Palace of Holyroodhouse and Salisbury Crags.
Members access to the chamber will be via a glazed corridor which connects with tower three.
The facade of the Canongate Building is being retained along with the existing gables. The rest of that building has been demolished to make way for a new structure constructed of steel and concrete.
Estimated completion: 2004
Embt Arquitectes Associats SL
RMJM Scotland LTD, M.A.H. Duncan, T.B. Stewart.