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Scottish parliament must be a landmark

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There are two things which are unavoidable, anywhere where there is civilisation, namely music and architecture - and generally both are, or have been, indigenous to their particular location.

In this shrinking world, these distinctions are becoming blurred: witness the global appeal of many pop groups and the world-wide work of internationally renowned architects.

Local character is being eroded as a result. With many new office buildings there is little or nothing to link them with the location in which they are built.

The proposals for a new Scottish parliament building will most probably be the most important public building to be built in Scotland, well into the next century. In view of this we must not squander the opportunity to make this building unique, a landmark building.

Value for money is most important, and rightly so, but on what basis: short or long term? In political terms it might suggest one political term; in historical terms 200 years. It may be expedient to go the developer route, but what guarantee do we have that the building will have the longevity befitting its purpose? It must have an intrinsic quality, for without that, to be part of Scottish history, it cannot be value for money.

LYNDALL LEET AND SHANE RODGERS

The Leet Rodgers Practice, Thurso, Caithness

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