European Parliament

The Palais de l’Europe is an imposing quadrilateral of pink sandstone, glass and steel, which was built in 1975. It is the seat of the Council de l’Europe . The Council was created in 1949 and was the first international parliamentary assembly in history.

In 1958 Strasbourg was chosen as the meeting point of the Assembly of the Community, today known as the European Parliament.

In 1992 Strasbourg became also the permanent seat of the European Parliament so the costruction of a new building became necessary since in the past, both the Council and the Parliament had used the parliamentary chamber in the Palais de l’Europe. The building has a curved facade and a reflective tower, whose summit reflects the image of the cathedral.

The complex was built on a 200.000 mq site and consists of six distinct areas, linked, however, under a common roof . The heart of the building, where official debates and the voting ceremony take place, is the 750-seat chamber, topped by an instantly recognisable oaken dome of 8000 mq. The dome swells out of a great arc-shaped building, containing the
meeting rooms.This is next to the large 60 m tower housing 1133 offices.

Other spaces are used for meetings, a press centre, a restaurant, receptions and so on.

Besides the MEPs have the use of four buildings built especially for them.

Constructed as an extensions of the Council of Europe, these buildings, dark-coloured, are know as I.P.E (Immeubles du Parlement Européeen or European Parliament Buildings).
Strasbourg is also the seat of the European Court of Human Rights. A new Human Rights building was inaugurated in 1995. It was designed by the British architect Richard Rogers, who imagined the new building “like a ship following the lines of the water”. Around the two towers of pink sandstone which house the plenary sessions of the Court, the exterior of the liner is as airy as possible, thanks to a combination of translucent glass and metal panels.
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