8 Aug 2012

Dunedin's Chinese Garden struggling

4:24 pm on 8 August 2012

Dunedin's Chinese Garden may be merged with a city museum because of falling visitor numbers.

The $7 million attraction completed four years ago is the only authentic Chinese garden in the southern hemisphere.

It is struggling with visitor numbers dropping by about two thirds from 83,000 in its first year to 28,000 last year.

The garden's manager Margo Reid says a report going to the council in September will propose ways to cut costs, including a possible management merger with the Otago Settlers' Museum next door which is undergoing a major refurbishment.

Ms Reid says the garden has managed to shave about $100,000 off its expenses, but needs visitor numbers to pick up soon.