Governing the nation in a forest-inspired setting


The forest can be a most tranquil place and perhaps that what Canada’s lawmakers need to make wise decisions and come January that’s what they will have.

Next year, federal politicians will come together in a new, glass-ceilinged House of Commons whose architectural design is based on a clearing in the woods, said CTV News. But this is just temporary for the West Block — at least for the next decade which is how long it’s going to take to renovate the Centre Block, where Parliament normally sits.

Architect Georges Drolet told media members that the towering floor-to-ceiling steel beams were designed to replicate trees and the House where MPs will gather is meant to represent a clearing in a forest, while Carol Phillips, another architect on the project, said the idea was to make the design feel rooted in the ground, while broad views of the sky overhead make the space feel “soaring.”

Construction for the new building cost $863 million and another $129 million for the adjacent Visitors Centre.

It’s unclear how taxpayers will have to dole out for renovations to Centre Block. The Treasury Board has approved $4.7 billion for renovations on Parliament Hill,  about $3 billion of which has already been spent.


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