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Administered by: Environment
Published Date 22 Feb 2016

 

 

Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999

 

INCLUSION OF A PLACE IN THE COMMONWEALTH HERITAGE LIST

 

 

THE ROYAL AUSTRALIAN MINT

 

 

I, Greg Hunt, Minister for the Environment, having considered in relation to the place described in the Schedule of this instrument:

 

(a)       the Australian Heritage Council’s assessment whether the place meets any of the Commonwealth Heritage criteria; and

 

(b)       the comments given to the Council under sections 341JF and 341JG of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999; and

 

being satisfied that the place described in the Schedule has the Commonwealth Heritage values specified in the Schedule, pursuant to section 341JI of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999, include the place and its Commonwealth Heritage values in the Commonwealth Heritage List.

 

 

 

Dated  15/01/2016

 

[signed by]

Greg Hunt

Minister for the Environment

 


 

SCHEDULE

 

STATE / TERRITORY:            AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY

Name:                                      The Royal Australian Mint

Location / Boundary:

Approximately 3.5ha, Denison Street, Deakin, being an area comprising the whole of Land Parcel Canberra, Deakin 65/1.

Criteria / Values


 

Criterion

Values

(a)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

the place has significant heritage value to the nation because of the place's important in the course, or pattern, of Australia's natural or cultural history

The Royal Australian Mint was purposely constructed to facilitate the conversion of Australia’s currency from the British Imperial denominations of pounds, shillings and pence into dollars and cents (decimal system) on 14 February 1966. Although part of a broader monetary trend of Commonwealth countries converting to decimal currency, the conversion was another step in the construction of a distinct Australian identity in a post-Empire world. The Royal Australian Mint is testament to the dichotomy of Australia’s new and old national identity, as the “Royal” Australian Mint was pivotal in the production of vast quantities of new “Dollars” to support the conversion.

The features of the Royal Australian Mint displaying this value are the existence of the former Administration Building and former Process Building as identifiable structures in which the production of decimal coinage for the conversion took place.

(b)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

the place has significant heritage value to the nation because of the place's possession of uncommon, rare or endangered aspects of Australia's natural or cultural history

The Royal Australian Mint has been the sole facility for the production of Australia’s coinage (the Reserve Bank of Australia produces currency notes) since 1983. Historically, the Mint is unique in that it was the first and only Australian mint to be established independent of the London Royal Mint. The previous Australian Mints (Sydney, Melbourne and Perth) were established as branches of the London Royal Mint. As such, the Royal Australian Mint has significant heritage value in terms of containing an uncommon aspect of Australia’s cultural history in representing Australia’s development into an autonomous country from Britain, complementing other buildings in other fields in the national capital, such as Old Parliament House for the political sphere and the National Library and National Gallery in the cultural sphere.

The features of the Royal Australian Mint displaying this value are the industrial, operational and visitor exterior and interior constructions and works necessary in order for the working operation of Australia’s sole mint to continue. These have evolved and continue to evolve over time as the Mint improves its operation in response to engineering and other developments.


 

(d)

 

the place has significant heritage value because of the place’s importance in demonstrating the principal characteristics of:

                (i)                a class of Australia’s natural or cultural places; or

                (ii)                a class of Australia’s natural or cultural environments

The Royal Australian Mint’s stripped classical architecture is significant because the style identifies the Mint as a national institution, in addition to a functional factory. Given its location outside the Parliamentary Triangle, the architectural style is fundamental in linking the Mint with other national institutions, such as Old Parliament House and the National Library of Australia, through their common reference to the classical foundations of western society in Ancient Greece and Rome. The former Administration Building is a better representation of stripped classical architecture than the former Process Building as the architectural elements of the latter are secondary to its primary functional purposes.

Stripped classical architecture is featured in both the former Administration and Process Buildings in their uniform rectilinear elements (e.g. horizontal profiles, symmetrical facades) and lack of classical detailing. The former Administration Building displays a number of significant external elements including its two storey pavilion form, rhythmic facade treatments, recessed windows, sandstone and marble facade cladding, front terrazzo colonnade, low pitched hipped rectangular roof with projecting horizontal eaves, and formal main and secondary entrances with crests. The former Process Building’s functional use is reflected in its more simplified external style, but includes a number of significant elements such as its two storey pavilion form, rhythmic facade treatments, recessed windows, sandstone and basalt facade cladding, and mansard-style parapet roof with projecting eaves.

(g)

 

the place has significant heritage value because of the place’s strong or special association with a particular community or cultural group for social, cultural or spiritual reasons

The Royal Australian Mint has a strong association with coin collectors, also known as numismatists, for the products it produces as well as its symbolic importance. The Mint produces themed coins for the collector market and is important to numismatists who collect significant coins such as the first and last coins minted each year

 

For more information on the place search the Australian Heritage Database at http://www.environment.gov.au/cgi-bin/ahdb/search.pl using the name of the place.