British MPs Could Vacate Parliament For Six Years During Repairs

Houses of Parliament
The Palace of Westminster, London, on August 18. Parliament has been hit by sexual harassment and abuse scandals. Daniel Leal-Olivas/Getty

A committee is going to recommend that British MPs are moved out of the Houses of Parliament for six years, allowing for extensive restoration work to take place.

In a report due to be released on September 8, the Joint Committee on the Palace of Westminster is expected to conclude that MPs should be rehomed in the Department of Health's building, while peers relocate to the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Center.

The Times reports that the Prime Minister is in favor of the move, meaning that a parliamentary vote on the relocation is more likely to pass.

If approved, the committee's recommendation will be that the Houses of Parliament lie empty between 2022 and 2028.

A study into the condition of the Palace of Westminster last year uncovered potentially fatal fire hazards, large quantities of asbestos and leaking pipes.

It is likely that a six-year restoration project would cost between £3 billion and £4.3 billion. Repairs would however take about 32 years and could cost taxpayers as much as £7.1 billion if they were undertaken while MPs and peers continued to sit in Parliament.

Number 10 is expected to respond after the publication of the committee's report.