South African Parliament House


January 19, 2022

The South African Parliament House is a building in Cape Town where the South African Parliament meets. I started building the Parliament House in the late 19th century, when a two-chamber building was needed for the two-chamber parliament of the Kapmaa settlement. The building was the subject of a design competition and received a neoclassical façade. The foundation stone of the building was laid in 1875 by Governor Henry Barkly. The Parliament House was completed in 1885 and was the first building in Cape Town to have electric lights. The British colonies united in 1910 into the Union of South Africa. A new building for the European Parliament was then built next to the old Parliament building. The extension of the building complex was designed by Herbert Baker. For the second time in the 1980s, the Parliament House was enlarged for the National Assembly, the House of Commons. The fire started in the oldest part of the building and spread from there to newer parts used by Parliament. The roof of the oldest part collapsed, and the session hall of the National Assembly burned down completely.


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