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Nassau Bay - home to the astronauts - celebrated

AllAccessSportingNews

AllAccessSportingNews

July 31, 2020

New monument celebrates Houston suburb's link with NASA

        A new monument at the corner of NASA Road 1 and Space Center Boulevard celebrates the connection between the Houston suburb Nassau Bay and NASA's Johnson Space Center

"What was once just vast farm land has grown tremendously into a vibrant hub of aeronautical and space industry businesses, a medical hub, and a large tourism draw. It is almost certain that NASA JSC was the catalyst for what we have around our region today," said Nassau Bay Mayor Mark Denman, speaking at the ceremony.

First developed in 1962 in response to NASA moving its human spaceflight program to the then-new Manned Spacecraft Center (today Johnson Space Center), Nassau Bay was incorporated as a city in 1970. More than 60 astronauts have called the community home, including Apollo moonwalkers Alan Bean, Gene Cernan, and David Scott, per Space.com

"Our city's origin is centered around developing a community for the professionals that work at Johnson Space Center. The success of NASA JSC has led to our community being a thriving hub along NASA Parkway. For that, we thank you," said Denman.

"Close to two tons of galvanized metal supported by over 40 yards of concrete, which is attached in place by 10 helical anchors into the earth," Denman described. "The helical pile anchors, which stretch 40 feet deep, have the pulling resistance strength, combined, to close to 400,000 pounds, making the structure very resistant to winds over 150 miles an hour."

Beginning at the structure's base, LED modules can be used to illuminate the monument's underside in any combination of 16 million colors. The lighting can be programmed to allow annual displays and custom shows.

The arc serves as the primary focus and creates the beacon to NASA's future.

"We deliberately installed an infinity light that will shoot up hundreds of feet in the air," said Denman. "So the best part about it, it will be seen for miles around."

Designed by Natalia Beard of the Houston-based landscape architecture firm SWA Group, the spire was built as a joint project between the city, Johnson Space Center and the Texas Department of Transportation. The monument was funded using the city's hotel occupancy tax fund, which is earmarked to promote tourism and the arts within Nassau Bay.

"I think this is going to be a landmark structure for us here in Nassau Bay, to be able to locate this community, to show its support for NASA and to show our support for our area here," said Texas State Representative Dennis Paul at the monument's dedication. "I'm ready to see it get lit up."



AllAccessSportingNews

AllAccessSportingNews

Ran DeBord - All Access Sporting News

 Follow @AASNSports on Twitter, or me, @RanDeBord

Attributes: AASNSports;   Space.com; NassauBay


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