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November 8, 2012

Parliament Hill renovation costs quietly soar

OTTAWA

New documents show the cost to repair Parliament Hill’s crumbling West Block has quietly crossed the billion-dollar mark.

The revised work estimate for the heritage structure appears on a single line of the federal public accounts for the fiscal year 2011-12. The price tag for the renovation has soared since 2005, when Treasury Board approved $769 million to restore the building. In February 2011, the Public Works Department said the cost had grown to $863 million — what was then an increase of $94 million.

The same day the government revised its initial estimate, former auditor general Sheila Fraser said she “would not be at all surprised if the cost estimates increase over the project.” Now the public accounts document shows the latest estimate is $1.17 billion.

News from © Canadian Press Enterprises Inc., 2012

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