The National Botanic Gardens is hoping a unique "floating cube" will become an international attraction for Canberra in the coming years.
Construction on the Ian Porter National Conservatory starts this week and is expected to be finished by the end of next year.
The national conservatory will showcase exclusively native Australian and tropical plants from areas including Kakadu National Park, the wet tropics of northern Queensland, Christmas Island and other exotic areas.
Australian National Botanic Gardens manager Peter Byron said the national conservatory was expected to be a "major tourism drawcard" for Canberra.
"It's highly sustainable. Barely uses any energy and provides an ideal environment for tropical plants," Mr Byron said.
"It's going to be amazing. There's nothing like it anywhere in the world."
As well as a tourism destination, the national conservatory will also operate as a world-class research facility for rare and threatened Australian tropical plants.
"Where researchers can easily access these plants to study them, better understand the plants. Instead of having to travel to remote areas of Australia," Mr Byron said.
The Ian Potter Foundation was established in 1964 and is one of the largest philanthropic foundations in Australia.
Known for funding major innovation and conservation projects, the foundation established by the late Sir Ian Potter is committed to making a difference in Australia.
"Early on they were very keen to support the development of the conservatory, providing $1.9 million in a donation. Which is the largest donation in the history of the botanic gardens," Mr Byron said.
Australian National Botanic Gardens nursery manager Joe McAuliffe said the conservatory's central gallery would replicate the conditions of a tropical rainforest and visitors would be able to immerse themselves in the sights and scents of the tropics.
"We've already collected and propagated an array of threatened tropical plants for the conservatory and some of these species will be on public display for the first time," Mr McAuliffe said.
"We have the biggest collection of native Australian plants in the world at the gardens and this project through representation of our tropical flora allows us to grow the collection even more."
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content: