The space shuttle Endeavour has arrived at its final resting place after being decommissioned: the California Science Center in Los Angeles’ Exposition Park.
Endeavour arrived at its new home on Sunday as crowds of people lined Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard to watch the space shuttle pull into the museum where it will be on permanent display.
Originally, Endeavour was planned to arrive on Saturday by 9 p.m. local time (12 midnight EDT), but the shuttle’s wide wingspan caused several problems on the tree-lined street. This ultimately meant that those in charge of the escort spent hours trimming trees to avoid damaging the shuttle, active from 1992 to 2011.
The trip on MLK Boulevard was only one part of its two-day, 12-mile trip from Los Angeles International Airport, which began with a large crowd and fanfare.
"We've seen our beautiful planet Earth from space, we've been weightless, we've been able to fly -- no special effects needed when you're in space," astronaut Michael Fincke told the crowd, according to Reuters. "And I tell you what, even though we've been in space we would not rather be anywhere else than where we are today," he said.
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Despite the delay, crowds have still been turning up for the event. In fact, Jeffery Rudolph, president of the California Science Center, told the Los Angeles Times that he estimated the crowds over the past three days had to number in the “seven figures.”
Los Angeles residents didn’t appear to mind the wait. “We waited all day and night, and it finally got here,” George Martin, 55, told the L.A. Times. And, he said, it was worth the wait.
“Oh, yeah, you're never going to get to see it again,” Martin said. “This is it.”