Officially opened in 1941, the Australian War Memorial is an iconic building of national significance. Located in line of sight of Australian Parliament House, our Memorial reminds the nation of the cost of war and the effects of service.

Our values, our character, and our identity live on in the stories of past, present, and future service members, their families and community. More than one million people visit our Memorial every year to honour these members’ service and learn about their experiences in war, peacekeeping, and humanitarian operations.

The time has come to modernise and expand our galleries and buildings so we can tell the continuing story of Australia’s contemporary contribution to a better world through the eyes of those who have served in modern conflicts; connecting the spirit of our past, present, and future for generations to come.

Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act referral process

Our Development Project plans were launched on Monday 18 November 2019 by the Prime Minister, the Hon. Scott Morrison MP.

The project includes a new southern entrance, refurbishment of the main building, a new Anzac Hall connected to the main building via a glazed link, an extension to the Bean Building, and public realm works. Sensitively connected to the existing landscape, the detailed plans will ensure the heritage façade remains unchanged.

We have submitted a referral under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Act 1999, including a Heritage Impact Assessment, to determine if our plans will need formal assessment and approval.

The Heritage Impact Assessment covers the two main items within the Development Project with the potential to impact the heritage values of the Memorial’s main building — the new Anzac Hall and glazed link and the new southern entrance.


Australian War Memorial precinct design

Australian War Memorial precinct design

Our submission has been published on the Department of Environment and Energy (DoEE) website for public consultation. This consultation phase runs from 19 November – 13 December 2019. For information on how to make a public comment on a referral, please see the EPBC Notices Homepage.

If the department establishes that the plans will need formal assessment and approval, a second consultation phase will occur in early 2020. This phase will focus on the plans — their heritage and environmental impacts.

During the consultation phases, please provide all formal feedback to the department as per its guidelines.

Please note DoEE have published an Invitation for public comment in relation to our development plans for Anzac Hall, the glazed link and the new southern entrance, commencing 19 November 2019. The referral documentation can be found at the DoEE website using the EPBC Referral number 2019/8574:

The referral consists of a 27 page referral document that summarises the planned actions, expected impacts and the relevant mitigation strategies for impacts together with nine attachments providing greater detail on these elements. 

Comment may be made in one of two ways per DoEE regulations as below, commenters should quote the reference number and title of the referral (EPBC Referral 2019/8574 Australian War Memorial/Commonwealth/Campbell/Australian Capital Territory/Australian War Memorial Redevelopment) and send their comments to:

Option 1

Electronically to the Department at


to the Minister for the Environment at

Option 2

Post to:
Referrals Gateway
Department of the Environment and Energy
GPO Box 787

Please note that any comments sent to an address other than those specified above may not be considered by the Minister for the Environment (or delegate) when making a decision on whether the referred action is a controlled action for the purposes of the EPBC Act.

New southern entrance

A new southern entrance will improve visitor orientation and arrival, and provide additional access to gallery spaces.

Designed by Scott Carver Pty Ltd, the new southern entrance will be created below the existing forecourt and connect through to the lower level of the main building.

Access will be via the eastern and western arrival courtyards. The western arrival courtyard will be ramped to provide access from the western car parks. The eastern arrival courtyard will have a stepped entrance from the ground level forecourt, with ramped and lift access to the underground and eastern car parks.

Eastern arrival courtyard

Eastern arrival courtyard.

 Western arrival courtyard

Western arrival courtyard.

The southern entrance will also house the Memorial shop and two electronic displays — one displaying Places of Pride and another representing current defence activity.

The connection to the main building will be maintained through a new focal point, the oculus, located at the heart of the new southern entrance. The design of the oculus draws upon the scale and detail of the dome to the Hall of Memory, its cone shape being an inversion of the dome, and its structure paying homage to the dome’s external finned structure. The oculus’ glazed skin is inspired by the internal mosaic collage designed by Napier Waller which adorns the internal skin of the dome in the Hall of Memory.

The southern entrance, including the oculus, shop and digital displays

The southern entrance, including the oculus, shop and digital displays.

Anzac Hall and glazed link

Designed by Cox Architecture Pty Ltd, the new Anzac Hall provides an additional 4,000m² of gallery space with the construction of a new two-storey building to house and display exhibitions, large technology objects and galleries.

Eastern view of new Anzac Hall and the glazed link

Eastern view of new Anzac Hall and the glazed link.

The decision to rebuild Anzac Hall was made following a comprehensive study and rigorous analysis of possible alternatives. This outcome was determined to be the least complex, best value for money approach that would not threaten the integrity of the heritage building. For further information, please refer to our frequently asked questions.

The glazed link, also designed by Cox Architecture, will strengthen and improve connectivity between the main building and Anzac Hall and will contain non-light sensitive large technology objects (including aircraft and armoured vehicles), a café/restaurant, and space to support the Memorial’s educational programs.

Glazed courtyard, featuring bridge between new Anzac Hall and the main building

Glazed courtyard, featuring bridge between new Anzac Hall and the main building.

Bean Building extension

We will be extending the C.E.W. Bean Building to the south, aligning with the forecourt in front of Poppy’s Café. This will allow us to consolidate research collections and services, relocate backend operations from the main building, and establish a world-class Research Centre.

Public realm works

Poppy’s Café car park extension

The National Capital Authority consultation on the Poppy’s Café car park extension was open for a number of weeks and closed on Tuesday 5 November. The main site works will begin soon after the Works Approval is received.

The works will provide an additional 123 car parking spaces for Memorial visitors.

There will also be a temporary car park (to be in place for approximately five years) installed on top of the basement car park, providing 115 car spaces for construction workers involved in the Memorial Development Project.

The temporary car park site will be returned to a native-based natural landscape at the end of the project.

Poppy’s Café car park extension

Poppy’s Café car park extension.

Expanded parade ground

We will be expanding and re-profiling the parade ground to address accessibility constraints, enhance site security and accommodate increased visitor attendance at events.

Expanded parade ground and the new southern entrance

Expanded parade ground and the new southern entrance.

Gallery development

Our Memorial is the centre of national commemoration for Australia’s involvement in conflict, telling the stories of Australia’s service men and women and their experiences in war and, more recently, peacekeeping and humanitarian operations. However, the stories of the 100,000 Australian veterans who have served over the past three decades remain mostly untold.

Through transforming our galleries and renewing our exhibition spaces, we will have the capacity to tell these stories to ensure our Memorial continues to be a place to honour, to learn and to heal.

There will be quiet spaces in the galleries, allowing veterans and their families space away from crowds for respite and reflection.

Our most iconic displays will return, ensuring our history continues to be understood by all generations of Australians.

Your stories

Can you assist the Memorial to tell your story?

We are developing our collections relating to recent conflicts, peacekeeping and humanitarian operations. We collect a wide range of significant material, such as uniforms, personal equipment, photographs, video footage, artworks, letters and diaries.

To offer material for donation to the National Collection, or to request further information, email us at

Engaging our veterans

Kylie Hasse

Engaging veterans and their families on the Development Project is a key priority for Government and the Memorial.

As part of our continuing story, we have featured nine current and recent service men and women. Each has a story to tell and their stories form a vital part of our narrative. They are a small group representing the broader vision for the project — through their eyes, we see their sacrifice, service, mateship and courage.

Our team managing the Development Project, including the new exhibitions and galleries, has significant veteran and defence family representation, and includes a reservist, two former Australian Defence Force personnel, and six members of defence families.

Veteran employment was a key selection criterion for the award of our first construction contract ­– the Poppy’s Café car park extension. Lendlease was awarded the contract in part based on their comprehensive veteran engagement and employment plan. This plan will see three to five veterans engaged in full-time roles on this part of the project. Lendlease has committed to providing development opportunities for at least one of these veterans. The site induction process for the car park works will include a talk by a veteran who will explain to workers the importance of the Memorial and the project to veterans and the Australian community.

Future construction contracts will include veteran and defence family employment programs.

Our Memorial is here to tell our veterans’ stories, and we want to ensure they have every opportunity to be involved in the project.

Project timeline

2018     Development project announced by the Prime Minister, Hon, Scott Morrison MP

2019     Early works begin

2020     Anzac Hall site preparations begin

2021     Southern entrance works begin

2022     Southern entrance external works complete

2023     Anzac Hall and glazed link open, southern entrance opens, C.E.W. Bean Building and Research Centre open

2024     Main building lower refurbishments and galleries begin

2025     Main building upper refurbishments begin

2027     Project complete

Find out more

To view our plans, and learn more about our continuing story, you can visit our on-site Information Gallery. Located outside Poppy’s Café, the Information Gallery is open daily from 8.15 am – 4.30 pm.  

Information Gallery

Information gallery

You can also subscribe to our new quarterly e-newsletter Our Next Chapter for project updates and public consultation information.

Our Next Chapter quarterly e-newsletter