Bunning and Madden

Bunning and Madden is an Australian architecture and urban planning firm based in Canberra and Sydney. The firm was founded by Walter Bunning in 1945 in Sydney. The firm's most notable commission was the design of the National Library of Australia and the firm was most prominent between 1955 and 1970s.

Walter Bunning was born on 19 May 1912 in South Brisbane. Bunning studied art at East Sydney Technical College. He attending Sydney Technical College at night and worked in the offices of Carlyle Greenwell and Stephenson & Meldrum. Bunning won the Kemp medal on qualifying in 1933 and became an associate of the college in 1936. He was awarded a Board of Architects Travelling Scholar (NSW) to study urban planning aboard during 1936-39. Bunning became an associate of the Royal Institute of British Architects in 1938 was awarded the Australian Medallion in 1939. Bunning returned to Sydney and was elected an associate of the Royal Australian Institute of Architects in 1940; and later Councillor of the New South Wales chapter, 1940–44 and Fellow in 1951). In 1945 he was appointed town planner under a Commonwealth scheme to redevelop the munitions plant at St Marys as factories. And also elaborated his view in Homes in the Sun. According to Robin Boyd, the book established Bunning as 'the best known architectural publicist in the country.

Bunning's firm was founded by him on 19 May 1945 in an office on the first floor of 15 York Street, Sydney. In the first year the practice produced many houses and number of town planning schemes. Bunning invited Charles Madden to join him and the partnership of Bunning and Madden was founded on 29 May 1946. Bunning and Madden won the Australia and New Zealand-wide competition to design Anzac House, the New South Wales official memorial for returned servicemen and women in WWI and WWII. In 1953 the firm was commissioned by Grace Bros. Limited to design a large suburban store at Parramatta. It was the first store in Australia with roof-top carpark.

Kevin Smith and Noel Potter were on the staff of the firm for some years and become Associates in 1955 and 1957. On 16 July 1960, Madden died and Bunning took Smith and Potter into the partnership and Arthur Robb became an Associate of the firm. In 1961 the firm was commissioned to design the National Library of Australia by the National Capital Development Commission, Potter was the project architect on the National Library and finally opened Bunning and Madden’s permanent office in Civic in 1964, and remained the firm's partner in charge in Canberra until retiring in 1996. The firm completed International House for the University of Sydney in 1967. Robb joined the partnership on 1 July 1969. Bunning and Madden architects also work for the National Headquarters of The Institution of Engineers, Australia and Australian National University projects. Over many years the firm has carried out a large volume of work for the Department of Public Works in New South Wales and Housing Commission of New South Wales. Bunning was appointed Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George in 1975 and a Life Fellow of the Royal Australian Planning Institute in 1976. He died of a cerebral tumour on 13 October 1977.

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