MPs have launched a further inquiry into the proposed £4 billion restoration of the Palace of Westminster
The Commons Public Accounts Committee will oversee the investigation but did not reveal any details of what would be discussed.
It is also unclear when the inquiry’s findings will be revealed, meaning a further wait for BDP, Allies and Morrison, Foster + Partners and HOK – the practices shortlisted for the project’s client adviser role back in late 2015 (see AJ 10.12.15).
However, it is increasingly likely the firms might also have to look again at the budget for the ambitious scheme.
Valerie Vaz MP, speaking during a Commons debate on the restoration proposals last week, said there was no doubt that engineers, architects and consultants would need to readdress the costs of the project – which she said would be different from those submitted last year.
It has been five months since the joint committee, appointed in July 2015 to oversee the restoration project, issued recommendations for a full decant of the Palace of Westminster.
The recommendation came off the back of a report issued by a consortium including consultants Deloitte Real Estate, Aecom and HOK.
Scenarios outlined for carrying out the works ranged in cost up to £7 billion.
According to an industry source, firms that had submitted bids for the programme, project and cost management services contract were expecting to hear back by the end of July last year whether they had won the deal.
However, the insider told the AJ’s sister title Construction News there had been a ‘lack of communication’ regarding the progress of the procurement process.
The joint committee has been contacted for comment.