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Costs of MPs' buildings outstrip their budgets

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Building costs for two offices for mps have soared, angering those who will occupy them. Costs for Sir Michael Hopkins' seven-storey block opposite London's Big Ben are believed to have risen to around £250 million. The original design was approved in 1992 at £130 million. It will house 205 mps when completed in 2000, but many are calling for an National Audit Office inquiry into the price hike.

Costs for the Scottish Parliament building are also set to spiral to £100 million, from an original estimate of £40 million. A final site has yet to be chosen, but Calton Hill or Holyrood are thought to be favourites.

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