Rendering of Armenian American Museum in Glendale.

Rendering of Armenian American Museum in Glendale.

Construction on a museum in Glendale devoted to Armenian history and culture will begin July 11.

In development for more than seven years, the Armenian American Museum, a two-story, 50,000-square-foot contemporary building, will rise at the southwest corner of Glendale Central Park.

The park block itself will soon after undergoing an $18.5 million upgrade.

Designed by Glendale architecture firm Alajajian Marcoosi Architects, with a distinctive contemporary exterior inspired by rock formations in Armenia, the museum building’s first floor will include a lobby, auditorium, administrative offices and learning centers. The second floor will feature permanent and temporary exhibition galleries. The structure will also house a single level of basement parking.

The museum has also retained the services of Gallagher & Associates to create its permanent exhibition.

The museum has been made possible through a $1 per year ground lease agreement with the city of Glendale, which owns the park property and is also host to a sizable Armenian American community.

The museum's initial lease will run for 55 years with four decade-long extension options for a total of 95 years.