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Research Guides


Government Records about the Australian Capital Territory


6. Changes in the wind, 1972–89

Upon its election in 1972, the Whitlam government established the Department of the Capital Territory. For the first time since the Territory's establishment in 1911, there was a single department dedicated to its administration. There was one exception to the new arrangement. City planning was the responsibility of the National Capital Development Commission, placed within the newly created Department of Urban and Regional Development, which was responsible for matters relating to city and regional planning and development.

During the next 17 years, Canberra witnessed a period of expansion, political upheaval (with the dismissal of the Whitlam government in 1975), numerous committees of inquiry into matters affecting the city and region, the age of economic rationalism and the disposal of Commonwealth assets and, finally, self-government for the Territory in 1989.

SELECTED RECORDS RELATING TO MINISTERS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF THE CAPITAL TERRITORY
National Archives
Gordon Bryant – ministerial files, 1973–75 M2748
Tony Staley – papers relating to the portfolio of the Minister for the Capital Territory, 1976–77 M591
Bob Ellicott – personal papers, 1978–81 AA1980/716
Michael Hodgman – folders of papers, 1980–82 M3546
National Library
Kep Enderby – ministerial papers, 1972–73 MS 3887

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Chapter 6
Changes in the wind, 1972–89