Parliament puts firms on notice for £1.2bn of work

Parliament’s strategic estates team has alerted contractors to a £1.2bn maintenance framework due to open for tenders.

The Parliamentary Construction Partnership Framework, which will run into the 2030s, will see companies work to prevent the deterioration of the Grade I-listed Houses of Parliament.
A prior information notice, released on Friday, stated that work will include mechanical, electrical, public health, fire and life safety systems, building fabric, roofing, stonework, and other associated activities to “maintain a safe and secure environment in and around the Palace of Westminster”.

Last year, a report from the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee warned that there is a real risk the buildings could be destroyed by fire before a programme to refurbish them fully has been designed.

Parliament spends up to £2m a week on maintenance work, and the historic buildings generate more than 4,000 pieces of maintenance work every month, according to the report.
It later emerged that proposals for the complete refurbishment would not be put to MPs until at least 2025.

The contract opportunity notice reveals: “Over the summer and early autumn, specialists spent 4,850 hours examining 160 rooms and drilling boreholes up to 70 metres deep to assess ground conditions around the Palace of Westminster.”

The forthcoming framework is separate from any future refurbishment plans and will replace the current Mechanical, Electrical, Public Health, and Fabric Safety Framework, which is due to expire in March 2025.

The delivery authority is conducting tens of thousands of hours of Palace building investigations to build on existing records and better understand the Palace’s condition.
Last year, specialists spent 4,850 hours examining 160 rooms and drilling boreholes up to 70m deep to assess ground conditions around the Palace of Westminster.

Dozens of major projects, including Victoria Tower and Norman Shaw North, are underway to repair and restore key buildings by in-house teams, including strategic estates, digital, and maintenance.