The building has 39 floors and was planned to be much larger, however it would have blocked sunlight from reaching the buildings on its east including the State Library and Parliament. The setback roof or step design allows sunlight to reach the south-eastern side of the building. The spires appear oversized for the building; this was caused by the height being reduced, the spires being proportionate to a taller building. The building has a hollow core that provides air and light throughout the building; this core rises from a large foyer area that covers the whole area of the ground floor. The foyer is named 'the assembly'.
This building is the second-tallest building in the world with fewer than 40 floors. Al Faisaliyah Center (Riyadh) is taller. The net lettable area is 42,965 square metres (462,470 sq ft), with space for 78 cars. Construction costs totaled A$450 million.Bovis Lend Lease was the project manager and design and construction manager. BVN Architecture was responsible for the interior fit-out. The building is of the late-modernist or modern school of design and is made primarily of concrete, glass and steel.