LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The space shuttle Endeavour has finally arrived to the California Science Center, nearly 16 hours after its expected arrival time.
The 85-ton aircraft slowly crawled down Martin Luther King Boulevard on Sunday morning in what officials described as the “narrowest and most challenging portion of the route.” By 11:30 a.m., the shuttle had made a sharp turn onto Bill Robertson Lane and was presented with its final obstacle — light poles.
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, along with other dignitaries, welcomed the space shuttle to its new home during an afternoon press conference.
The Endeavour finally moved into its hanger Sunday afternoon.
Joy Benedict, reporting for CBS2 and KCAL9, said the shuttle narrowly avoided trees and buildings in several anticipated close calls throughout the morning.
“We have seen them tilt the shuttle. They have risen it up. They have lowered it down. They have turned it sideways,” Benedict said. “I have seen it come within three or four inches of a building on that side because of how vast that wing span is.”
KNX 1070’s Vytas Safroncikas reports that the delays, however, didn’t deter many determined fans who continued to line the route for a glimpse of Endeavour.
Endeavour’s final 12-mile journey – which organizers dubbed “Mission 26” – began Friday.
Endeavour was originally set to make it to its final destination 8:30 p.m. Saturday. It’s exhibit will open to the public on Oct. 30.
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