The start of work on a new museum in the Waitangi Treaty Grounds will blessed at an on-site ceremony today.
The Waitangi National Trust awarded the tender to Kaikohe-based Henwood Builders on Thursday and the company will start work immediately.
Ngapuhi kaumatua Wiremu Wiremu will lead the blessing at 9am.
In March this year the trust was allocated $7.5 million from the Lottery Significant Projects fund towards a national museum and education centre at Waitangi. At the time the trust's CEO Greg McManus said the Museum of Waitangi was the cornerstone project of a major programme of development at the Treaty Grounds, aimed at enhancing the visitor experience at New Zealand's most important historic site.
The museum will cost $9.4 million, while the entire redevelopment project is expected be about $12.5m.
"The new museum will enable us to tell the stories of Waitangi and the origins of our nation in much greater depth," Mr McManus said.