NFSA extension opened in June 1999


This year marks two significant milestones for the NFSA Building in Acton, Canberra.

A new-look NFSA

Twenty years ago, on 21 June 1999, Prime Minister John Howard opened a major extension to the NFSA heritage building, giving us vital new space for preserving and collecting Australia’s film, broadcast and sound heritage.

Building under construction

NFSA extension under construction, 1998.

Funding for the extension had been announced by Prime Minister Paul Keating in October 1994.

Construction began in 1998 on a three-level annexe wing across the north-western end of the building. The annexe connects the north and south galleries and encloses the central courtyard, complementing the design of the main building.

The news story below is from the day before the official opening and features then Federal Arts Minister the Hon. Peter McGauran MP and Australian Film Commission CEO Kim Dalton:

With construction completed, the building extension was officially opened by Prime Minister John Howard on 21 June 1999. Listen to a recording of his speech from the event:

A new building – 35 years ago

Fifteen years earlier, Prime Minister Bob Hawke declared the NFSA open at its present site, in the former Australian Institute of Anatomy.

This news story from 1984 announces the move and features an interview with NFSA Interim Director Colin Pitson, as well as a look inside the institute building as it then was:

Learn more about the heritage NFSA building.