Palace of Parliament – second largest building in the world
The Palace of the Parliament was built between the years 1984-1989 and it’s the largest administrative building in Europe. It is situated in the central part of Bucharest (the 5th sector), on the Arsenal Hill.
When the Revolution burst out, only a few rooms and the exterior part of the Palace were finished. After the Revolution the construction of the Palace lasted till 1997, when it became officially the Palace of the Parliament. The building has an area of 333.000 square meters and it is recorded on the second place in the Guinness Book of World Records in the section “Administrative Buildings”. The Pentagon takes the first place in the world in this respect. According to the same book, the Palace of the Parliament lies on the third place in the world, regarding its volume (2.550.000 cube meters). The first place is taken by the Assembly Building of the spatial rockets from Cape Canaveral (situated in Florida) and the second by Quetzalcoatl Pyramid from Mexico. The building is structured on 6 levels and divided in 21 parts. There are 1100 rooms, 440 of which are bureaus, more than 30 are halls, 4 restaurants, 3 libraries, a concert hall and 2 underground parking lots.
The building can be spotted from every corner of Bucharest and was regarded as a hideous building after the Revolution (many bad and weird things were said about it). Some people, out of revolutionary excitement, wanted the Palace to be demolished by dynamiting, because, they said it symbolized the past. Others thought that this building was useless and that a museum of Communism should be built instead. Eventually, it was even thought that the Palace of the Parliament was in fact a casino.
In front of the Palace of the Parliament one may see the Constitution Square (Piata Constitutiei) (which is a place for shows, celebrations and parades) and after that the Unirii Boulevard (which was once called Victory of the Socialism), which Ceausescu wanted to be larger than Champs Elysees. The whole thoroughfare is full of various stone-made wells which are beautifully decorated. Their esthetic level drew a lot of controversies.
Book a tour of Bucharest to learn more about the Parliament Palace