Justice Minister Amy Adams says work will start on upgrading and refurbishing Dunedin's historic Stuart Street courthouse in early October, and is expected to finish in December 2017.
Ms Adams says South Island company Amalgamated Building has won the contract for the work.
"Dunedin's courthouse is not only one of the most notable historic buildings in New Zealand but a centrepiece of the city's rich cultural heritage," she says.
"Despite the project's complexity, the Government has committed a significant investment to restoring this historic courthouse to its former glory.
"We have set aside up to $20 million as part of Budget 2016 to strengthen the building to 60-70% of the New Building Standard and to put in place new technology and audio-visual capabilities, enhance security and CCTV coverage, and make the registry area more customer friendly.
"The decision to restore the courthouse acknowledges its historic importance to the people of Dunedin and its significance to Dunedin's legal fraternity."
Court services will continue to be delivered from the current locations at 184 High Street and John Wickliffe House until the historic courthouse reopens.