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Parliament House

Architect: Peter Kerr & John George Knight

City of Melbourne | C18

Victoria’s Parliament House is one of Australia’s oldest and most architecturally distinguished public buildings. Facing the intersection of Spring and Bourke Streets, the west façade with its sweeping steps, elegant lamps and grand colonnades project solidity and strength. Plans for Parliament House were drawn in November 1855 by architect, Peter Kerr. The first stages of the building’s construction were the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council Chambers in 1856. The Parliamentary Library was completed five years later, with the Vestibule and Queen’s Hall built in 1879. Work on the façade started in 1878, and was not completed until 1892 due to a lack of material. The façade is finished in a mix of basalt, freestone and brick. A flight of 41 steps – some up to 46 metres in length – leads to the vestibule entrance, flanked by 14 ornate triple-glow lamps, which were installed in 1891 and restored in 1979. The vision of Peter Kerr for Parliament House has not been fully realised, with the building remaining an incomplete structure. Original plans for the building included a dome to sit atop the Vestibule, which would have made the total height of the Vestibule 42 metres.

Need to Know

  • Open: Sat & Sun 10am-4pm

  • What's Open: Queens Hall, Legislative Council and Legislative Assembly Chambers

  • Special Note: All visitors are subject to security screening.

  • Tour Details: Tours leave every 15 minutes, running for 45minutes, in groups of 45

  • Building Type: Government

  • Facilities: Toilets

  • Access: Pram accessible, Fully accessible – see staff for assistance

  • Year Built: 1856

  • Transport: Tram stop 9: Spring St/Bourke St on routes 89 and 96

  • Tour Type: Guided, queue

Location

Spring St, East Melbourne 3002, VIC

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