After six years of construction, the building that India today knows as its Parliament was completed in 1927, realising the vision of Sir Edwin Lutyens and Sir Herbert Baker. Now, under the proposed Central Vista Redevelopment plan, India is set to get a new Parliament building by July 2022.However, the new building is not without its set of problems. The Supreme Court is set to hear legal challenges against the environment clearance and change in land use of the new Parliament. The need for a new Parliament was also raised in the Rajya Sabha, with Congress MP Anand Sharma questioning the cost of the new structure. Replying to Sharma, Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Puri said that the current Parliament building is showing “signs of distress and overutilisation” and so is “insufficient to meet the requirements.”But what are these requirements? Where will the new Parliament be built? What’s the political significance of its design? And how much is it going to cost? Here’s everything you need to know.Unravelling the Tangled Knots of Central Vista Redevelopment1. Where Will the New Parliament Be? What Will it Look Like?The new Parliament will be constructed adjacent to the existing Parliament building. It will be triangular and will reportedly come up on 13 acres within the existing Parliament complex. Based on the design by HCP Design – the firm in-charge of the proposed Central Vista redevelopment – this is what the new Parliament will look like.A new Parliament building is one of the main features of the Central Vista redevelopment project – which also includes a new Central Secretariat, a new PM’s residence and office, and a new Vice-President’s house.A New VP’s Residence to be Part of Central Vista Revamp: Report2. What Will be Different in this New Parliament?The new Parliament will be larger than the existing building. It will have space for 900 MPs – with 800 MPs for Lok Sabha and 100 MPs for Rajya Sabha – and enough space for a joint Parliament session of 1,350 MPs.According to a presentation given by Bimal Patel, director of HCP Design, the new Parliament will also have a separate lounge for MPs, a VIP lounge, and office space for MPs. Here’s a sketch of the ground floor plan of the new Parliament, as shared by Bimal Patel in a talk at CEPT University in Ahmedabad.Under the proposed new Parliament building, the space available to MPs will increase to 60cm by 60cm, with enough space for a desk and with each bench seating two MPs. Central Vista: There’s a ‘New’ Delhi in Town & Not All Are Happy3. Why Do We Need Space for More MPs?Speaking in the Rajya Sabha, Union Minister Hardeep Puri argued for a new Parliament, saying that, “the number of Lok Sabha seats is likely to go up.” This likely increase in Lok Sabha seats could be due to delimitation. According to the Election Commission of India, the “present constituencies carved out on the basis of 2001 census shall continue to be in operation till the first census after 2026.”Writing in a paper titled “India’s Emerging Crisis of Representation” for Carnegie, Milan Vaishnav and Jamie Hintson argue that by 2026, keeping in mind existing levels of representation, the “Lok Sabha would have to consist of 848 representatives.” The expanded design of the new Parliament could be a nod to a potential increase in MPs.Central Vista: Why Green Clearance Sought Only for New Parliament?4. How Much Will the New Parliament Cost?The new Parliament will cost Rs 776 crore, according to the CPWD’s application for environment clearance for the building.5. There’s Also an Environmental CostBut the cost of a new Parliament is not just financial. 194 trees will also be cut in the construction of the new Parliament. According to the CPWD’s application for environment clearance, there are 326 trees currently at the proposed project land. Apart from other vegetation, 194 trees will be cut or transplanted. The application also mentions plans to plant 250 trees to make up for the loss of trees during construction.Lift Veil From Central Vista Redevelopment Plan: CPI(M) to Govt6. What Will Happen to the Old Parliament Building?When HCP Design had first proposed a redesign of the Central Vista, they had said that the old Parliament will be converted into a museum which will show the history of modern India. In subsequent revisions of the design, it has been stated that the old Parliament will be used for some special functions. In a presentation at CEPT University, Bimal Patel has said that the existing Parliament building will be “appropriately retrofitted and meaningfully used in conjunction with the new facility.”However, historians and architects have argued that no heritage studies or public consultations were conducted before the construction of a new Parliament was finalised. We'll get through this! Meanwhile, here's all you need to know about the Coronavirus outbreak to keep yourself safe, informed, and updated. The Quint is now available on Telegram & WhatsApp too, Click here to join.