Plans to Modernize and Expand the Australian War Memorial Revealed

The AWM or the Australian War Memorial will undergo a series of development and refurbishments works, in order to renovate its galleries and its buildings. COX architecture will design the new Anzac Hall with its connection to the main structure, while Scott Carver will be in charge of the southern entrance.

Plans to Modernize and Expand the Australian War Memorial Revealed - More Images+ 3

Courtesy of COX Render

Standing tall as a reminder of “the cost of war and effects of service”, the new works in the Australian War Memorial, expected to be completed in 2027, will help enhance its current condition and “will aid the museum in continuing to tell the stories of Australian’s who have served in modern conflicts; connecting the spirit of the past, present and future”. A physical representation of pride, honor, courage, and sacrifice, the museum, opened initially in 1941, is located in proximity to the Australian Parliament House.

It is a great honor and privilege to be delivering with the AWM a significant expansion and enhancement of exhibition space which will facilitate the fitting recognition of the contribution of servicemen and women from more recent conflicts and campaigns. -- Ian Smith, Project Director at COX architecture.

Courtesy of Scott Carver

While the façade remains the same, a new larger Anzac Hall will be created by COX architecture with a glazed connection. Without threatening the integrity of the heritage building, the new hall generates an additional 4,000m2 of gallery space with the construction of a two-story building to house exhibitions. Set to open in 2023, the transparent link will improve the connectivity between the main building and the hall, and will act as a display space for non-light sensitive large elements.

Our team is extremely proud to support the Australian War Memorial’s vision to expand their galleries and tell the untold stories of our modern conflicts and peacekeeping missions. Our aim with the design within this historic and symbolic place was to augment such an important cultural landmark with respect, strength, and sensitivity, integrating the new elements into the wider site context and reinforcing the pre-eminence of the main Memorial building. -- Pete Sullivan, Design Director at COX architecture.

Courtesy of Scott Carver

A new southern entrance designed by architectural firm Scott Carver will mark “the beginning and end of the journey through the Memorial and a place to orientate and connect, through both the physical and the intellectual”. With a delicate design approach, the oculus offers a holistic space and indicates the start and end of the visitor’s path and experience. In fact, the architects state that “further story-telling was achieved through a new central focal nexus, the Oculus, located to the heart of the new southern entrance. The Oculus not only visually and physically connects to the existing Memorial but also allows for the provision of experiential and emotionally inspired moments in the spatial planning”.

We are proud to be tasked with the responsibility of creating spaces through which all can experience significant moments in our nations’ history within an iconic cultural institution. Working with the Australian War Memorial provides us with the opportunity to not only create a place of strong architectural significance but to also create a place that inspires a connection to the intangible. -- Doug Southwell, Director Scott Carver.

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Cite: Christele Harrouk. "Plans to Modernize and Expand the Australian War Memorial Revealed" 05 Dec 2019. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

Courtesy of COX Render


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