The Bush Capital

by Tim Rogers November. 17, 2018 1324 views

Canberra (not Sydney or Melbourne) is the capital city of Australia. A hundred plus years ago it was pretty much a non-entity sitting a third of the way from Sydney to Melbourne. It was just a little country outpost with some farming but not a lot going on and a little over a thousand people. Due to its geography and the fact Sydney and Melbourne would let the other be the new nations capital, the Canberra region got the nod in 1908 and the Australian Capital Territory (kind of like DC in the USA) became a thing in 1911.

An American architect called Walter Burley-Griffin was given the job of designing the new Australia capital after winning a competition. I lived in Canberra and I’ll give him his due. I like how his plan turned out. Canberra is now a city of just under 400000. It’s wide and open and wraps around a series of hills and valleys. You can technically be in the city proper and see nothing but open space. Turn a corner and you’ll see Parliament House and major government buildings. Round the next bend and you will see what looks like farmland. Take the next bend and you’ll see a National museum or historical moment or a suburb of 50000 people. It’s unlike any city I’ve been to. It’s called the Bush Capital for a reason (Just to be clear, we call the countryside in Australia, The Bush. It’s got nothing to do with a family of presidents.)

In 1964 they created a dam now known along the Molongolo River known now as Scrivener Dam and create a lake. The then Prime Minister named it after Walter Burley-Griffin. Lake Burley-Griffin divided the city into north and south with the business side on the north and the government buildings mostly on the south. Like most capital cities, a lot goes on and most of it happens either side of Lake Burley-Griffin. But if you find the right place, in this case to the western edge of the lake, it’s the most peaceful place on the planet.

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Björn Roose 1 year ago

Nice photos and ... I learned something today (I knew Canberra was the capital of Australia, but not why). Thanks !smile

1 year ago Edited
Tim Rogers Replied to Björn Roose 1 year ago

A few Australians don’t know the reason either😆

Thanks for the like

1 year ago Edited
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