HONG KONG'S first authentic Chinese garden, on the site of the Kowloon Walled City, will open by the end of this year. Eighty per cent of the work at the site of the former slum has been completed. Senior architect from Architectural Services Department, Tse Shun-kai, said the wet weather had been the biggest obstacle. But with 120 mainland craftsmen working hard, he said it would be finished on time. The $61 million Kowloon Walled City Park, designed in early Qing Dynasty style, features pavilions, winding galleries, rockeries, stone paving and wood and bamboo carvings. The cost rose unexpectedly by $2.3 million after the discovery of two stone tablets bearing the Chinese characters for 'south gate' and 'Kowloon Walled City'. Mr Tse said the extra cost was to preserve the tablets, which could be traced back to 1886 during the Tao Kwong era of the Qing Dynasty. Among several relics, the yamen - the administrative court - is to function as the central room, housing a snack shop and the park's management office. Three old wells will also be used to provide water for gardening. Most of the construction materials for the 31,000 square metre park were imported from nine Chinese provinces.