Canberra is home to many mid-century modern architecture gems, and Whitehead and Payne Architects’ Monaro Mall, originally opened in 1963, is no exception.
Today part of the Canberra Centre, Monaro Mall was opened by Prime Minister Robert Menzies and was the first multilevel, fully enclosed, shopping mall in the southern hemisphere and the first fully air-conditioned shopping centre in Australia.
An award-winning redevelopment by Universal Design Studio and Mather Architecture won the top awards for heritage and interior architecture in 2018, and reinstated and reimagined Monaro Mall’s heritage values, intent and finishes. Monaro Mall is now a light-filled and material-rich contemporary retail transformation which demonstrates the powerful potential of adaptive reuse of heritage buildings over demolition.
The Canberra Centre today is the Major Partner of DESIGN Canberra. Monaro Mall will be home to DESIGN Canberra exhibitions and activations throughout the festival (4-24 November).