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Adler Planetarium Makes Bid For NASA Space Shuttle

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An artist's rendering of the space shuttle at the Adler Planetarium. (Credit: Adler Plantarium)

An artist’s rendering of the space shuttle at the Adler Planetarium. (Credit: Adler Plantarium)

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CHICAGO (WBBM) — The Adler Planetarium is mounting a campaign to land one of NASA’s retired space shuttle orbiters.

Newsradio 780’s Regine Schlesinger reports, Discovery already is promised to the Smithsonian, but Endeavor and Atlantis still are up for grabs.


LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Regine Schlesinger Reports

Adler president Paul Knappenberger says he’s competing against 20 other institutions that want a shuttle, but he thinks Chicago deserves one.

He says many of the NASA crews that worked on the shuttle program hailed from this area.

Knappenberger says the Adler would have to build a brand new facility to house the 100-foot-long orbiter.

He says the plan is to build it on the adjacent parking lot and put in an underground parking facility.

If it wins one of the shuttle orbiters, the planetarium will launch a $100 million fund-raising campaign to bring it here. The shuttle itself reportedly will cost about $29 million to purchase.

NASA will announce its decision on April 12, the 30th anniversary of the first shuttle flight.

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