skip to Main Content

Parliament House, Canberra

About Parliament House, Canberra

Parliament House, known as Capital Hill or Parliament, is where the Parliament of Australia convenes and serves as the headquarters for the legislative branch of the Australian Government. Situated in Canberra, the Parliament Building is located on the southern apex of the Parliamentary Triangle on top of Capital Hill. It was built at the junction of Commonwealth, Adelaide, Canberra, and Kings Avenue, surrounded by the State Circle. The construction of Parliament House was overseen by Mitchell/Giurgola & Thorp Architects and carried out by a joint venture between Concrete Constructions and John Holland. Queen Elizabeth II inaugurated the building on 9 May 1988, and it was built at a cost exceeding A$1.1 billion (equivalent to approximately $4.3 billion in 2018).

The Provisional (Old) Parliament House, established in 1927, was eventually replaced by the Parliament House. Originally intended to serve as a temporary home for the Parliament for 50 years, the building could no longer accommodate the growing Parliament by the 1980s. Originally designed for approximately 300 individuals, the building now accommodates around 3000 people. To address this issue, an international competition was held to select the design for the new building. Out of 329 entries, one was chosen, and construction began in 1980. Queen Elizabeth II officially inaugurated the new Parliament House in 1988. The building is one of the largest in the Southern Hemisphere and came with a price tag of $1.1 billion.

Parliament House

What to do at Parliament House, Canberra

The Possum and Wallaby Dreaming mosaic, designed by Warlpiri artist Michael Nelson Jagamara, is located at the main entrance of Parliament House, known as the Forecourt. This artwork symbolizes the enduring presence of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Australia. Separating the Senate and House of Representatives, the two curved walls in Parliament House reflect the country’s bicameral parliamentary system. These chambers, the largest in the building, serve as meeting places for members of parliament to discuss proposed laws and represent their respective states/territories or electorates.

The colours of the Senate and House of Representatives adapted to reflect the Australian landscape, are based on the colours used in the British Parliament. The red ochre and grey-green colours of the Australian landscape are represented by the red in the Senate and the green used in the House. One of the largest stainless-steel structures in the world, the flag mast, marks the centre of the building. The Australian flag, which is about the size of the side of a double-decker bus, flies over Parliament House 24 hours a day.

Parliament House

One local company in Canberra that is involved with this tourist attraction site is:

Website: Epoxy Flooring Canberra Experts

Address: 15C Geelong St, Fyshwick ACT 2609

Phone: (02) 6189 5296