Martin Luther King Memorial on the National Mall, Washington, DC. (Photo: AP)

A statue of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. will soon stand on the Georgia statehouse grounds, an area not too far from where demonstrations have been taking place, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal and State Rep. Calvin Smyre on June 29 announced details about the project. The 8-feet-tall statue will stand on a 3-foot base, which would include some of King’s most powerful quotes along all four sides. The project is estimated to take six to seven months to complete and is likely to cost nearly $350,000.

Gov. Deal first announced plans for the project last year, but the effort was delayed in 2014 because of elections. Deal said that the monument for Rev. King was a “long overdue honor.”

The King family is appreciative of the gesture. In a press release the King estate stated, “We also are grateful for Gov. Deal, Rep. Smyre and the other stakeholders who have worked to ensure this memorial appropriately honors Dr. King, a native son of Georgia who left his state, his nation and his world a better place.”

The decision to build the memorial for Rev. King, however, comes at a critical time, as there is a looming debate over the Confederate flag in the wake of the murder of nine African Americans at an African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C., by a White man who allegedly wanted to start a race war.

Democrats in Georgia have been pushing for the state to stop celebrating Confederate Heritage Month and Confederate Memorial Day. The state has since stopped selling license plates with the Confederate symbol. The Sons of Confederate Veterans threatened legal actions against Deal if the administration continues to refuse to sell the plates, according to the Journal-Constitution.

The statue will be designed by Georgia artist Andy Davis. Davis is a full-time sculptor and has created many statues depicting well-known figure and organizations, including music legend Ray Charles, Chick-Fil-A founder S. Truett Cathy and the Georgia Police Memorial, according to the Georgia Governor’s Office.

E-mail: jhunter@afro.com; Twitter: @hunter_jonathan