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Old Treasury Building

Architect: John James Clark, 1858-1862

City of Melbourne | C16

Building Description

The Old Treasury Building is one of Melbourne’s finest gold-rush buildings. Designed by precocious nineteen-year-old architect JJ Clark, it was constructed between 1858 and 1862 in the popular Renaissance Revival style. The elegantly proportioned building features three main entrances to the ground floor, a central portico with an upper-storey colonnaded arcade, and elaborately detailed window pilasters and pediments. The internal spaces are equally gracious. The Treasury Building was designed to store gold in secure basement vaults, still accessible today, but it also provided offices for the leaders of the young colony, including the Treasurer and Governor. When the Treasurer and his officers moved to their new offices in 1878, it became the ‘Old Treasury’. As a leading public building in Melbourne, located in a prominent position with open space around it, the Old Treasury has been the focus of many public celebrations and other assemblies, including large-scale political demonstrations, over the years. The Old Treasury Building is now a museum. Exhibitions chart the growth of Melbourne from obscure village to world metropolis, through dramatic panoramic images of the city created between 1841 and 1900. A new exhibition tells the story of gold-rush days through a selection of individual objects.

Need to Know

  • Open: Thursday 1 January 10am-4pm

  • What's Open: Ground Floor and Basement

  • Tour Type: C16

  • Access: Fully accessible

  • Notes: No flash photography or selfie sticks. Accessible entrance at rear of building.

  • Building Type: Cultural

  • Transport: Stop 8: Spring St on routes 11, 12, 48, 109

  • Website:

  • Photo Credit: Andy Gibson


20 Spring St, Melbourne 3000, VIC


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