Clem Cummings bus shelter
Canberra’s iconic Clem Cummings bus shelters were awarded the Sir Roy Grounds Award for Enduring Architecture. Photo: Kerrie Brewer.

Canberra’s Clem Cummings bus shelters are something of a local icon, having been turned into various fashion accessories, had their very own 166-page book written about them, and even relocated around the city to be better utilised.

Now, they’re once again being recognised for their contribution to the ACT’s architectural landscape, tonight receiving the Sir Roy Grounds Award for Enduring Architecture at the ACT Architecture Awards.

The some-480 Clem Cummings-designed shelters dotted across the Capital were recognised for their architectural integrity and the quality of the shelter’s designs, evident through “its simplicity, functionality, and materiality,” the jury said.

A total of 24 awards and commendations were handed out this year and jury chair Cassandra Keller said the focus was on sustainability and residential housing.

The awards’ top gong, the Canberra Medallion, went to House for Hiroko in O’Connor by architect Anthony Knobel, who also took home the Malcolm Moir and Heather Sutherland Award for Residential Architecture for the project.

House for Hiroko in O’Connor by architect Anthony Knobel took home the Canberra Medallion. Builder: Craig Golding, Photo: Regina Seelig.

“[It’s] a delightful and modest response to a couple’s life-long ambition to commission a home that celebrates and encapsulates a culturally rich life lived abroad,” the jury said of the home comprising two pavilions with a central living space that invites the garden inside.

“With these awards, we celebrate the relationship between architects and their clients, as well as the broader community, that helps deliver projects which constantly raise the bar in terms of responsive, considered and sustainable design,” Ms Keller said.

Other iconic Canberra locations old and new were also recognised, with Verity Lane Market awarded a commendation for its adaptation of the heritage Sydney building to create an up-market food hall. Capital Brewing Co’s taproom at Canberra Airport received an award for interior architecture and Cox Architecture’s Kingsborough Village received a commendation for urban design.

ACT award winners will now progress to compete in the National Architecture Awards.


2021 ACT Architecture Award winners

The Pamille Berg Award for Art in Architecture

  • Murmuration – Art Installation, Daryl Jackson Alastair Swayn Commercial Architecture

Commercial Architecture

  • Northbourne Avenue, Bates Smart – The John Andrews Award for Commercial Architecture
  • Brindabella Carpark 9, Guida Moseley Brown Architects – Commendation

COLORBOND Award for Steel Architecture

  • Mass House #4, Townsend + Associates Architects

Educational Architecture

  • Burgmann Anglican School – Early Learning Centre, COX Architecture – Commendation
  • The Australian National University: Research School of Social Sciences, Hassell – Commendation

Enduring Architecture 

  • Canberra’s Concrete Bus Shelters, 1975–1995, Clem Cummings – The Sir Roy Grounds Award for Enduring Architecture

Heritage Architecture

  • Verity Lane Market, Mather Architecture – Commendation

Interior Architecture

  • Burgmann Anglican School – Early Learning Centre, Cox Architecture – The W. Hayward Morris Award for Interior Architecture
  • Capital Brewing Company Airport Taproom, Craig Tan Architects – Award
  • University of Canberra – Our Space 5C Fitout, Cox Architecture – Commendation

Light in Architecture I The Robert Foster Award for Light in Architecture 

  • Jacka Crescent Townhouses, CO-AP (Architects) – Award

Public Architecture 

  • Winnunga Nimmityjah AHCS New Health and Community Facility, JUDD.studio – Commendation
  • Stromlo Leisure Centre, COX Architecture – Commendation

Residential Architecture – Houses (Alterations and Additions) 

  • Little Loft House, Light House Architecture and Science – The Gene Willsford Award for Residential Architecture (Alterations & Additions)

Residential Architecture – Houses (New)

  • House for Hiroko, Anthony Knobel Architect – Canberra Medallion and The Malcolm Moir and Heather Sutherland Award for Residential Architecture – Houses (New)
  • SL House. Ben Walker Architects Pty Ltd – Award
  • Narrabundah House, Ben Walker Architects – Commendation
  • Mass House #4, Townsend + Associates Architects – Commendation

Residential Architecture – Multiple Housing

  • Jacka Crescent Townhouses, CO-AP (Architects) – The Sydney Ancher Award for Residential Architecture-Multiple Housing

Sustainable Architecture

  • Little Loft House, Light House Architecture and Science  The Derek Wrigley Award for Sustainable Architecture
  • Pettit and Sevitt Revival, Light House Architecture and Science – Commendation 

Urban Design 

  • Kingsborough Village, Cox Architecture – Commendation
Highgrove Bathrooms
Highgrove Bathrooms