M&E works to keep the building safe beyond 2020 to start

Work on the £6bn revamp of the Palace of Westminster will start with M&E repair work to ensure it remains safe for use beyond 2020.

A detailed exploration of the condition of the building will also be carried out, while strategies for building-wide security, asbestos removal, and fire safety improvements will be made.

These works will ensure Parliament is ready to commission design work once both Houses have made a decision over the length of time work will be carried out.

Work will be carried out by architect BDP and a team led by CH2M, which includes consultant Currie & Brown, after the firms won the two client advisory roles to provide architectural and building design services and programme, project and cost management services last month.

A report, commissioned by both Houses of Parliament, was published nearly two years ago and looked into the best options to carry out work with costs ranging from £4bn to £6bn and taking up to 30 years to complete.

Last year a joint committee of MPs and peers representing both Houses recommended a full move-out of MPs and peers lasting six years.

In March this year, MPs on the public accounts committee (PAC) endorsed the six year option agreeing it was “the most economical, effective and efficient choice” – but criticised the delay in getting on with the restoration of the crumbling grade I-listed palace.

Both Houses of Parliament are still to vote on which option to proceed with.