The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens announced Wednesday that it is ready to begin the final phase of construction on its Chinese Garden now that the majority of the funding for the $23 million project is in place.

Groundbreaking on the Liu Fang Yuan (Garden of Flowing Fragrance) project is set for Aug. 28, with construction expected to last for 18 months.

The new features will increase the garden’s footprint from the initial 3 1/2 acres to 12 acres, which will make it one of the largest classical-style Chinese gardens in the world, according to The Huntington.

“This is a long-held dream, to put the finishing touches on a project that has engaged thousands of visitors and scores of individuals — from donors and diplomats to staff, scholars, and volunteers,” said Steve Hindle, The Huntington’s interim president. “The Chinese Garden is essential to our mission in that it expands our research and educational programs and provides extraordinary inspiration that extends across cultures. We are profoundly grateful to those who have made it possible.”

The garden opened in 2008 and was expanded in 2014, and currently includes 10 pavilions and a rock grotto situated around a one-acre lake. The expansion project plans to add an exhibition complex at the north end of the garden, a larger cafe and other additions.

The cost of the final phase is around $23 million, and The Huntington said it has raised more than $19 million of that amount. Once competed, the total cost of the garden is estimated to be $53 million.

The garden will remain open to visitors during construction, with the new sections anticipated to open in February 2020.

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