(WRCB) -- A $150,000 grant from the Benwood Foundation and individual donors has helped The Chattanooga History Center meet a fundraising challenge set forth by the Lyndhurst Foundation'.

A news release issued Monday says the CHC has met the $250,000 fundraising challenge, with totals of more than $9.3 million, nearly 90% of the $10.5 million goal.

The challenge was issued in March of this year to support the Center's campaign to build a new 19,500 sq-ft museum neat the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga.

Construction has entered the final stages, with the Chattanooga History Center expecting to open its doors in early 2014.

The CHC, designed by Ralph Appelbaum Associates, will use story-telling and other non-traditional techniques to share Chattanooga's rich history with visitors.

The museum exhibition design firm is responsible for the design of U.S. Holocaust Museum, The Country Music Hall of Fame, The NASCAR Museum, The National World War I Museum and the Newseum.

"We are grateful that the Benwood Foundation, the Lyndhurst Foundation and other funders have chosen to support our capital campaign and placed their faith in our efforts to complete Chattanooga's next big idea – the Chattanooga History Center," said Cannon and Rick Montague, board members of the Chattanooga History Center and co-chairs of its capital campaign.  "The extraordinary generosity of this community continues to bolster our efforts, and we look forward to announcing additional donors and public support in the near future that will bring our capital campaign to a close."

The Chattanooga History Center announced  last month that actor and Chattanooga native Samuel L. Jackson has provided the narration for the project, according to Daryl Black, executive director of the center.

"As someone who was raised in Chattanooga, I'm excited to be part of this effort that will tell the real story of Chattanooga and the events that helped shape its history," Jackson said in a news release.