NASA announced today where the four remaining space shuttles will make their final landing when the shuttle program closes for good later this year.
But people representing facilities from around the country who didn’t get one of the awesome beasts are as cranky as toddlers about being passed over. Who could blame them? Two are a little over 200 miles apart on the East Coast. A third is also down I-95. The fourth is on the West Coast (and near my home so no complaints here!).
One city that got overlooked is especially surprising. Let’s just say, “we’ve got a problem.”
Houston! Even though Johnson Space Center played a crucial role throughout the space shuttle program, they didn’t get one of the space shuttles.
Neither did Seattle, who went ahead and erected a building to house one of the flying beasts.
Here are the four facilities named today, which marks the 50th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin’s blast off into space and the 30th anniversary of the space shuttle’s first launch.
- The Atlantis will be sent to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida.
- The Endeavour will go to the California Science Center in Los Angeles.
- The Discovery has a new home at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Virginia.
- The test shuttle, Enterprise, will be at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum in New York.
The winners have to pay almost $29 million each in delivery costs. They also had to reassure NASA that the vehicles would be housed in specially climate-controlled spaces.
There are two shuttle flights left for the program: Endeavor has a launch planned for April 29 and Atlantis will go up on June 28.
Think you’ll go out of your way to see one of these retired space shuttles. Maybe for a family vacation?