This dodecagonal 50 cent coin was minted in commemoration of Parliament House. The coin was designed by Horst Hahne and
1901 is the year of the first official meeting of the Australian Federal Parliament at which time meetings were held in Melbourne at the Victorian Parliament House. Debates were held for a number of years concerning the matter of the best location for the nations permanent Parliament building. There were a number of specifications that had to be fulfilled through the location and as the two largest cities of Sydney and Melbourne could not be considered as options, Canberra, New South Wales was chosen. World War 1 was happening at the time, which contributed to the delay of the completion of the provincial Parliament House, now known as Old Parliament House in 1927. Parliament was held in this building for the next 60 years over which time many important decisions were made and Australia as a nation went through a period of great change and development. The Old Parliament House is now open to the public and is occupied by the Museum of Australian Democracy.
The New Parliament House, also located in Canberra was opened by her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II on May 9th 1988. The architectural company Mitchell/ Giurgola designed it, after winning a competition started in 1978. The symbolic parliamentary triangle was an important element of the design. A large portion of the building is open to the public and it has become so popular that it is now considered to be a tourist attraction and an object of pride for Australians.
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