COSTA MESA, Calif. — The first of an eight-phase project at the OC Fair and Event Center has the green light. Expected to be completed in 2024 and cost about $25 million, this phase will add 15,659 square feet to the already extensive footprint in Costa Mesa.

The board of directors gave the go-ahead last week with a unanimous vote, the OC Fair and Event Center said in a Tuesday news release.

The OC Fair and Event Center has been a key economic driver for the area with its annual state fair, a month-long event of rides, concerts and other attractions topped with a sprawling assortment of food. The OC Fair and Event Center reports it generated nearly $300 million in spending just in 2015, a sizable chunk of the $3.9 billion generated throughout the entire network of California state fair sites.

The initial construction will include workspace for employees who will be displaced by other construction in later phases.

The first phase is just a small piece of what the OC Fair and Event Center has planned. The total project cost for all eight phases has initially been predicted at $229 million and will run through 2032.

Subsequent projects will tackle a new Century Barn at Centennial Farm, an agriculture education center, new “strategically located” public restrooms and more.

The latter phases include a revamp of many key experiences visitors have enjoyed for years, during the state fair and beyond.

The Pacific Amphitheater will get an upgrade in phases 5A and 5B, which includes the demolition and replacement of the box office and a revamp of the entire facility.

The Action Sports Arena will also get nearly $3 million worth of attention in phase six. The bench seating will be replaced with stadium seating, reducing capacity from 1,800 to 1,462 spectators.

The first phase is also the most expensive until the master plan arrives at phases seven and eight, with estimated costs of $86,601,932 and $67,695,432, respectively. Phase seven includes demolition of the replaced buildings, and eight includes finishing touches like landscaping, a security fence and whatever else is left over to complete.

“I am proud of the work that the staff and board have put into this plan, and I know it is a great path forward for OC Fair & Event Center,” said OC Fair and Event Center CEO Michele Richards in a news release. “We are on solid financial ground and the master site plan projects will bring the property new opportunities to serve the community, generate family fun and fulfill our mission.”