Before the programme can get going, a number of things need to happen, including developing a detailed design brief and budget to be signed off by Parliament, and designing and testing out temporary accommodation.
Richmond House, on Whitehall – near the existing Palace of Westminster – is the preferred location for the temporary Commons, while the Queen Elizabeth II Centre – a stone’s throw from Parliament Square – is preferred for the Lords.
To allow time to get all this preparation done, the programme isn’t expected to begin until the mid-2020s.
It is also too early to say how much the works will cost, as a more exact figure will not be known until the body in charge makes its business case.
However, in 2015, the Independent Options Appraisal did identify indicative, relative costs for a range of the options, and estimated the one phase programme would cost between £3.52bn and £3.87bn, at 2014 prices.
What work has taken place so far?
Some issues were deemed too urgent to wait for the full programme to start, hence why some of the buildings are already covered in scaffolding.
This includes work to Elizabeth Tower – home to Big Ben – where the roof will be stripped off and restored, the bell frame repaired, leaks into the clock room stemmed and a lift installed.
A brick enclosure in the tower will also be replaced with glass to allow Big Ben to be viewed by people walking up the staircase.
A major project to improve fire safety across the estate was also completed last year, including upgrades to fire doors, new signs and a high pressure water mist system.
Teams of fire safety officers also patrol the buildings 24 hours a day to spot any fire safety issues.
Has Notre-Dame quickened the timetable?
It has definitely increased attention to the issue from MPs, including from Labour’s Chris Bryant.
But there is still so much work to do, it is hard to see the process being sped up.
A Parliamentary spokesman said: “Fire safety is a key priority for Parliament and protections are constantly reviewed and updated, including at our active construction sites, and in planning for the future restoration and renewal of the Palace of Westminster.
“We stand ready to learn any lessons that emerge from the fire at Notre Dame to ensure we do everything possible to protect our people and buildings on the Parliamentary Estate.”