NASA’s plans to restore its Historic Mission Control room, where teams communicated with the astronauts of the the Apollo missions, revved up this week.
As Rare previously reported, Johnson Space Center launched a Kickstarter back in July to raise funds necessary to pay for the restoration, with the space agency reportedly working to raise $250,000 for the project.
Officials say the renovations are estimated to cost $5 million in total, with $4 million already reportedly secured.
NASA’s Historic Mission Control is a destination for visitors to Johnson Space Center, but it no longer looks as it did in the 60s.
With the upcoming anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission, when the first man walked on the moon, NASA plans to unveil the fully restored mission control room as it looked on July 20, 1969, when the United States made history.
On Thursday, the restoration project began with the removal of equipment for restoration:
“All of these historical consoles have been catalogued and we are removing them from the room and sending them to our restoration contractor,” Jim Thornton, NASA’s project manager for the restoration, said in an interview with reporters. “This is [the first] stepping stone in the overall project to restore the original Apollo flight control room, visitor viewing room and the simulation control room back to the way they appeared in July of 1969.”
The items will be restored at a firm in Kansas, a process reportedly expected to take 14 months.
NASA administration said the goal is to give visitors the effect of the mission control room being operational, complete with Apollo’s mission clocks.
“This will be a complete and accurate historical restoration and preservation. It will be preserved and accurate,” JSC’s historian and preservation officer Sandra Tetley said in an interview. “We’re not just fixing this place up.”
Houston will always be Space City, y’all.
Correction: A previous version of the story stated that NASA, rather than Johnson Space Center, created the Kickstarter. As a governmental agency, NASA does not solicit funds.