NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The Space Shuttle Enterprise exhibit has reopened at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, eight months after the pavilion was damaged by Superstorm Sandy.
The new pavilion for NASA’s retired shuttle was unveiled at a ribbon cutting ceremony Wednesday morning.
“I think it’s amazing,” said visitor Linda James. ”Just beautiful.”
The Enterprise arrived at the Intrepid with great fanfare piggybacked on a 747 jet, and opened to the public last July.
The old inflatable pavilion was ripped to shreds and deflated after storm waters from Sandy flooded the Intrepid’s main power supply and backup generators.
“Sandy was such a punch in the face to all of New York and this is our story,” curator Eric Boehn said.
Since October, the Enterprise has remained docked aboard the Intrepid, but has been unprotected from the elements. Now after eight months of work, the Enterprise exhibit is back.
“I think it’s awesome that they were able to rebuild it and open back to the public in such a quick time and it’s amazing for the kids to be able to see this,” said visitor Paul Morales.
The newly built pavilion is larger than the original inflatable tent and is made of steel and designed to withstand harsher conditions. It will also feature a soundscape entryway featuring audio between NASA control and Enterprise astronauts.
“It’s an extraordinary experience, even better than it was before,” said Susan Marenoff-Zausner, president of the museum. ”You can probably spend three days on the Intrepid.”
In addition to the Enterprise, visitors will get an up-close look at a Russian Soyuz space capsule.
Admission into the space pavilion costs an extra $7 on top of the ticket price to see the Intrepid. Hundreds lined up throughout the day to see the first orbiter ever built, CBS 2′s Kathryn Brown reported.
The Enterprise will likely stay on the Intrepid for several years, but the museum is currently scouting out a place to build a permanent exhibit for the shuttle someplace around the Intrepid.
For more information, visit www.intrepidmuseum.org.
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