L.A. NOW

Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Space shuttle Endeavour coming to California Science Center, permanently

Shuttle

The space shuttle Endeavour is coming home to Southern California for permanent display at the California Science Center in Los Angeles.

The shuttle, much of which was built in Southern California, has one more scheduled flight, on April 29. The flight will be commanded by Capt. Mark E. Kelly, husband of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, the Arizona congresswoman severely injured in the mass shooting in Tucson in January.

Two other retired shuttles will go to two other sites -- Florida's Kennedy Space Center and the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum -- NASA announced Tuesday after a fierce competition for what one museum director called the rarest of space artifacts.

"We are thrilled," said Jeffrey N. Rudolph, president of the science center in a statement Tuesday thanking NASA for recognizing "the importance of returning the Endeavour to its home in California."

"The Endeavour will provide an educational platform for the public to celebrate California’s long time leadership in science, technology, mathematics and engineering," he added. "We are confident that it will serve to motivate and inspire millions of young people to dream about possibilities and will attract and engage the next generation of California’s and our nation’s workforce in these fields.”

California Science CenterThe test orbiter now on display at the Smithsonian will go to New York's Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum.

NASA Administrator Charles F. Bolden Jr. made the announcement at a ceremony at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Tuesday to mark the 30th anniversary of the first shuttle launch.

Officials at the California Science Center in Exposition Park got a shuttle-like blast from beating out more than a dozen other cities for the right to house the orbiter, which will enhance the museum's prestige and could provide an economic boost for the city.

Now, the museum must pay $28.8 million to bring the Endeavour to Los Angeles and overcome the logistical challenges of transporting the craft, with its 78-foot wingspan, to a city famous for its traffic problems.

Southern California's ties to the shuttle program date back to the early 1970s. The program pumped billions of dollars into the economy and employed thousands in communities including Downey, Canoga Park and Palmdale. An occasional reminder of the effects of the program came in the form of a sonic boom, which jarred the region during shuttle landings at Edwards Air Force Base.

ALSO:

South Bay firm is building 22-story rocket

Aerospace legend Bruce Rutan retires

-- Richard Simon in Washington

Photos, from top: Space shuttle Endeavour, shown last month during its slow move to its launch pad, will be displayed at L.A.'s California Science Center after its final flight, scheduled for April 29. Credit: John Raoux / Associated Press. California Science Center in Exposition Park. Credit: Los Angeles Times

 
Comments () | Archives (62)

For those who say CSS deserves it more than JSS are lost. All the astronauts, there families, friends live here in Houston Clear Lake. Those who died on both lost shuttles lived here. They trained here as well. The connection the city of Houston has to the shuttle program, let alone the apace program as a whole is unfathomable until you visit. It is the reason this area even exists. Friendswood, Texas was built because of NASA. So to say CSS has more space history than JSS is a mute argument.

Please - California deserves one of the space shuttles and matters to the national space program. The Intrepid in NYC is very must linked to NASA as it was the very vehicle used to recover the capsule. Kennedy Space Center is the home of the human Spaceflight program and DC is most prepared to present this engineering marvel. JSC's roll was to supply astronauts and mission control which should have ALWAYS been done at Kennedy Space Center. JSC's ego and that of Houston are extremely inflated. Let's see...you are going on a family vacation - who would choose Houston or Dayton over NYC, CA, FL , or DC? Umm, most sane people GLOBALLY!!

Houston is not space city! KSC, Southern CA, DC should be automatic and without question. The NYC intrepid is the actual recovery vessel for the capsules. People like going to NYC and aren't treated horribly like in places like Houston. These where great choices.

I agree with some people who question why NY got one. I don't recall what they did that was significant in the space race. CA is a good choice because it represents the west and the endeavor was built there and it's usually the backup location for the shuttle to land.

can someone explain why NY got it...besides the tourist population?

For the record ! Any surplus no longer needed by NASA is to be turned over to the Defense Dept . This means government funded museums would come before private museums . Dayton is a federal funded National museum , is Los Angeles ? Ohio is home of more astronauts than any other state, John Glenn & Neil Armstrong to name a couple not to mention the Wright Brothers . lol Now the shuttles will be in the hands of private museums ( New York - L.A. ) and the tax payers will have to pay to see what they paid to build unlike Dayton's museum which is free to the public and sits in the middle of 61% of the population in the United States . barrack Obama is probably just trying to get some votes by sending the shuttle to these private museums and pretty much breaking the law in doing so .

For the record!? RE: john floyd | April 13, 2011 at 10:54 AM

The CSC is a State Museum. (It’s in the name) It is also a private foundation but there is no admission fee and people will see the Space Shuttle for free. We may even be able to see it from the 100fwy.

The President did not make the selection. It was carried out by a quite professional team of NASA engineers with criteria that had to be met. NASA wants national and international support while inspiring the generations of the future. It will be a airport if JSC even remains open at this point.

HOW DOES CALIFORNIA EXPECT TO PAY OF THIS SHUTTLE???

HOW CLOSE IS THE NEAREST AIRPORT THAT CAN HANDLE THE LANDING OF A B-747 WITH THE SHUTTLE ON TOP????

THEY WILL HAVE TO HAUL THE SHUTTLE THRU THE STREETS OF L.A. TO GET TO THE MUSEUM......THIS IS A MAJOR EXPENSE????????

WHY DON'T YOU JUST GIVE IT TO OHIO, W-P AIR FORCE MUSEUM, THEY CAN AFFORD IT AND HAVE A SHELTERED AREA TO HOUSE IT.

Why California?? All the shuttles should be centered near the population center..............by that I mean "Museum going, artistically inclined, high end people" That group of people are out East.

That is why New York City, D.C. got their shuttles.

W-Patterson Air Musem in Ohio, should have gotten a shuttle.

How can California afford it? Ohio already had an enclosed new hangar to put the shuttle.


California, give it up ........and give it to OHIO.

@ Marcus ( For the Record ) State funded and Government funded are two different things .

First of all congratulations to California, The Smithsonian and Kennedy Space Center! As for New York I can't in good conscience say the same. You see I have lived in Houston since 1981 and I have visited Johnson Space Center dozens of times over the last 30 years. When people visit us from out of town JSC is always on the short list of where we take them. Houstonians know exactly where they were when the Challenger exploded and when the Columbia crashed. My wife and I were two of the thousands of people on both occasions that to flowers and participated in candle lighting ceremonies when both events happened. How many New Yorkers can say the same? Houston gets a bum wrap because of our being a southern city. People that have never been here have no Idea how diverse and international we really are. I personally love New York City and I think that it's an awesome place to visit, but they have absolutely no ties to the space program and they do not deserve to get the Enterprise. Any international visitors that want to see a shuttle can go to The Smithsonian. California has the west covered and Florida has the east covered. Texas in the middle of the country and we will take good care of any visitors coming to see it at JSC. I ask those of you in California and Florida to join in on any efforts to get us The Enterprise. After all California built them, Florida launched them and Houston mission controlled them.

 
« | 1 2 3

Connect

Recommended on Facebook


Advertisement

In Case You Missed It...

Video

About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
Have a story tip for L.A. Now?
Please send to newstips@latimes.com
Can I call someone with news?
Yes. The city desk number is (213) 237-7847.

Categories




Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: