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'I would do it all over again' says beleaguered Holyrood architect


The architect at the centre of the ongoing Scottish Parliament debacle - the wife of the late Enric Miralles - has vowed that she would 'do it all over again'.

In the run-up to her appearance at the Fraser Inquiry, Benedetta Tagliabue told the AJ that she would 'not hesitate' to work on another scheme for the Scottish government.

The comments follow a further hike last week in the official estimated cost of the Holyrood building from £401 million to £431 million. The original figure for the scheme was set at £40 million in 1997.

The Barcelonabased architect has also come under fire in Scotland this week after it emerged at the inquiry that she has refused to sign up to a cap on fees.

But Tagliabue - who took over the scheme when Miralles died in 2000 - insisted that she was 'unconcerned' about the ongoing criticism and was still enjoying working on the project.

'I accept the situation as it is now and I would accept it on another job, ' she said. 'I am very happy working in the UK and every time we go to Scotland I feel serene.

'I find it completely different to working in Spain and that makes it very interesting. If the Scottish authorities asked me to do another job it would be great. I have really enjoyed working on the parliament.'

And she said she was completely unaffected by the criticism. 'I can see why there are people saying what they are saying, but I interpret it as a positive thing, ' she said. 'It shows the Scottish people's love for the building.

'I think most of the criticism has come from the local press and we do not worry about this kind of thing because we are an international practice.We work all over the place - in Spain, France, Italy and even in China, ' Tagliabue added.

lBovis Lend Lease gave evidence to the Fraser Inquiry this week. The main contractor told the inquiry that it had had 'no hope in hell' of judging costs because neither the architect nor the Scottish authorities provided an official cost plan.

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