Cotton Research Conference
5-7 September, 2017
CSIRO Discovery Centre, Canberra

Venue and Accommodation

CSIRO Discovery Centre

The conference will be held in the CSIRO Discovery Centre at the Black Mountain Science and Innovation Precinct, Clunies Ross Street Acton ACT. Plenary Lectures will be presented in the Optus Theatre that seats a maximum of 180 people. Concurrent Session will be held in the main Optus Theatre and in the nearby lecture Theatre of building 1.

The CSIRO Discovery Centre houses the Optus Theatre, Café and an exhibition area and education centre which offers an interactive journey through CSIRO and Australian science history. It is one of Canberra's major attractions and is definitely worth adding to your list of things to do when you visit the city. The attraction presents science in an entertaining way to demystify it, and educate kids and adults of all ages about the fascinating world of research and innovation.

The exhibition is self-guided and allows visitors to immerse themselves in stories of Australian research and its value to society. A highlight of visiting Discovery is viewing the 3D movie exploring the latest in CSIRO and Australian science and research. The centre opened in May 2000.

Venue Directions
CSIRO Discovery Centre
BLD001 Lecture Theatre
Black Mountain Site Plan

Parking at CSIRO

There is some limited signed visitor parking around the CSIRO Discovery Centre, but all the rest of the staff parking is gated. You are welcome to use the staff parking area in the centre of the site, just push the attention button at any boom gate (after 8:00am)and it will dial the main reception - tell them you are with the Cotton Conference and they will raise the boom. All gated parking areas open automatically as you approach the exit. 

Please visit the CSIRO Discovery Website or click the tabs below to view more information on the venues and locations for the conference.


CSIRO is located about 2 km from the Canberra City CBD so there are many options available for accommodation within the city centre and at New Acton that are in easy walking distance from the CSIRO Discovery Centre. A couple of suggestions are indicated below but it is up to delegates to book and pay for their own accommodation directly with the hotels.

Please note that Parliament is sitting during those dates so it is advisable to get in early and book your accommodation well in advance. Canberra can still be cool at night in early spring so bring a jacket.

The Avenue Hotel is a preferred hotel for CSIRO staff visiting Canberra and have negotiated a contract rate. The hotel have agreed to make that rate and benefits (free WiFi) available to all delegates attending the Cotton conference. Indicate to them that you are with CSIRO when booking directly via email at or free call 1800 828 000 to obtain the current discounted rates.

University House is the closest accommodation to CSIRO, located on the campus of the adjacent Australian National University. Twin Room, single occupancy $152 per night including breakfast or the Queen Suites, single occupancy $167 per night including breakfast. A limited number of rooms have been reserved for delegates but these must be taken up at least four weeks before the conference. To take advantage of these rooms please call University House Reservations on 02 6125 5211 and mention CSIRO.

Options for budget accommodation in Canberra are limited, but there is:

Avenue Hotel

80 Northbourne Ave,
Canberra ACT 2602,

2.1km from CSIRO Discovery Centre

The modern rooms feature balconies and floor-to-ceiling windows, plus rainfall showerheads, minibars, free Wi-Fi and flat-screen TVs with cable channels. Also available are 1- and 2-bedroom apartments that add kitchens with Nespresso machines, living/dining areas, DVD players and laundry facilities. Some have whirlpool baths. There’s 24-hour room service as well.

Parking is free. Other amenities include a casual bar and a steakhouse, plus a fitness room and a business centre. The Avenue is a 15-20 minute walk from the conference venue along Barry Drive.

University House

1 Balmain Crescent,
Acton ACT 2601
Less than 2km from CSIRO Discovery Centre.

University House had its beginnings as a residential college for professors and graduate students and is now a boutique hotel, with fine and casual dining, functions and event spaces and an excellent bar and cellar. It is the ceremonial heart of Australia's National University, with the Great Hall a stunning venue. University House is about a 15 minute walk through the campus to the conference venue.

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