Point of Interest

Council House

Australia / The Pacific

The Council House is a 13 storey modernist style building on St George’s Terrace.  The old Public Offices or Old Government Offices used to be on this site, and served as the Colony’s governing Legislative Council, designed by the colony’s architect Henry Reveley (1788-1865). The Perth City Council originally met at the convict-built Town Hall (1870) but this arrangement proved inadequate. After many decades a new purpose-built accommodation was considered. A national competition was staged in 1960, to which 61 designs were submitted, the winning design is by Jeffrey Howlett (1928-2005) and Don Bailey of Melbourne.  Work on Council House started in October 1961 and enough of the building was completed in time for the British Empire and Commonwealth Games hosted in Perth in 1962. The completed building was officially opened by the Queen on 25 March 1963. The building has been the subject of vigorous public debate about its heritage value. These conflicting views led to animosity in the 1990s, when the State Government refused to heritage list the property, and instead recommended its demolition. Despite this, the City of Perth opted to renovate the tower and keep it as its headquarters.

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