$70m LegCo building to be opened today

National 1 minute, 49 seconds


FOR the first time, the gates of the new $70 million State Legislative Council (LegCo) building will be opened today to play host to the Council's first meeting this year.

Sitting atop a 26-acre site on Jalan Kebangsaan in the capital, the blue-domed structure, designed by Akitek Alamreka architect Pg Ismail Pg Hj Mahmud, was officially opened last year.

The building has distinct Bruneian characteristics while incorporating tall columns, breathtaking flights of stairs and symmetrical motifs, which signifies order, strength and stability, explained Pg Ismail.

Three key elements of the national philosophy, Malay Islamic Monarchy (Melayu Islam Beraja), are emphasised in the building's structure and interior architecture.

Each of the columns at the main entrance is designed with a combination of traditional patterns such as Daun Lukut and Air Muleh, while the walls are decorated with a combination of intricately-designed brocade of Brunei Malay Songket such as Bunga Melor Bintang and Bunga Bersusun Indah Damai.

It also has several symbolic elements such as the five and nine columns at Porte Cocher, symbolising the declaration of the Brunei Constitution in 1959.

Meanwhile, the eight and four columns leading to the Legislative Chamber on the third level embodies Brunei full independence in 1984.

The main dome on the roof of the central main block is surrounded by 29 windows and columns displaying the rule of the 29th monarch, and portrays Islamic architecture and a natural environment.

Its tip is the highest point of the building that symbolises the harmony and sanctuary of meetings to be held at the Legislative Council building.

The building consists of four floors, approximately taking up 21,200 sq m. Level I accommodates a banquet hall, gym, staff canteen, surau, store and a covered car park.

Level II houses the main entrance hall and reception, committee meeting room, auditorium and office floor for administrative staff.

Level III houses the main chamber, which can accommodate 450 public seats, library and offices, while Level IV includes a room for technicians, reporters and translators.

Overall, the landscape with water elements gives a natural look to the site. A recreational area will also be provided at the building near the lake for the use of the public.

The Brunei Times