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Spaceport Houston

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This morning, Mayor Annise Parker and the Houston Airport System announced that Ellington Airport will become a licensed commercial spaceport.

Houston is one of 10 selected sites nationwide that's been approved by the Federal Aviation Administration.

 

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wow i'm stoked! i love this city and so excited to see all the great things happening lately...and special thanks to this site and all the members that post all this great information and keep the excitement going! 

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This whole idea seems bizarre to me and also rather naive.  

 

I'm kinda surprised that the director of the Houston airport system is pushing this, though I doubt he has the gravitas and financial backing to make a credible go at it.  If instead, it were backed by a visionary tech billionaire, I would be more optimistic that at least a serious attempt would be made.  If just left up to the COH, I imagine it would be underfunded and ignored by anyone outside of Houston.  

 

Sorry to be negative, but I think this is the only realistic response.

Archfan: Don't look now, but we just were awarded a spaceport.

I realize you were probably talking about the actual building of this proposal, but never underestimate Houston.

Hopefully it will be built as proposed. You have to admit that are airports are pretty nice so why wouldn't they create just as nice a place for the future spaceport.

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I'm going to make a bold prediction here... when this thing is built (and we have flights leaving it that take a mere couple of hours to get to Europe or the middle east)... you'll see major oil giants leaving the energy corridor and Woodlands and flocking back Downtown. What self-respecting company will fly high priority business associates into Houston and then have them endure a car ride to a far flung suburb across town that takes almost as long as the flight itself?

Edited by brian0123
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Or maybe they'll start flocking to Pearland, south Houston, Clear Lake - the economics of lower land prices and plenty of empty space will still be there.  I could see the Energy corridor withering some though once the Spaceport...takes off

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I feel like it's time to update our city seal. Somehow a train and a plow don't cut it anymore.

 

Voila!

 

post-14239-0-49216700-1435697413.jpg

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I'm going to make a bold prediction here... when this thing is built (and we have flights leaving it that take a mere couple of hours to get to Europe or the middle east)... you'll see major oil giants leaving the energy corridor and Woodlands and flocking back Downtown. What self-respecting company will fly high priority business associates into Houston and then have them endure a car ride to a far flung suburb across town that takes almost as long as the flight itself?

That would be great if that happened. But they already do it with IAH. I'm sure real big wigs could take a helicopter.

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I'm going to make a bold prediction here... when this thing is built (and we have flights leaving it that take a mere couple of hours to get to Europe or the middle east)... you'll see major oil giants leaving the energy corridor and Woodlands and flocking back Downtown. What self-respecting company will fly high priority business associates into Houston and then have them endure a car ride to a far flung suburb across town that takes almost as long as the flight itself?

 

I would think that an oil company would have helicopters based at Ellington and would just fly vip's wherever needed.  Lot cheaper than moving the exxon campus south.

 

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Maybe the spaceport can just have a fleet of black and yellow checkered helicopters standing by

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Looks like it's going to happen!

 

If that were true, the ones in Midland and Brownsville would be under development already. The permit has happened, which is a small step, but there has to be a market for space travel before this one gets started.

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The Brownsville spaceport is underway and is actually only a private spaceport (first of its kind!) exclusively for SpaceX, who is kicking ass and will be back on their feet or rocket boosters in no time.

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Maybe the spaceport can just have a fleet of black and yellow checkered helicopters standing by

 

by then there will be UberCopters ;)

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Hopefully there will be Uber spaceships. 

 

 

jinx

haha we were kinda on the same track

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There is no way those are the final designs.

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There is no way those are the final designs.

 

Probably not. Often owners of a proposed project will hire a separate firm to do pre-design work just to get the basic idea of things and come to grips with the scope. There are whole firms that just work on master plans like these.

 

I would love to see this as a major international competition. Design a spaceport for space city. It sells itself! There so many great firms that could do it. I would love to see something that would attract the BIG's, OMA's, SOM's, Zaha's, and Foster's of the world.

 

Other cities might be designing new fancy airports, but only Houston will be able to say they have a specially designed public use spaceport!

Edited by Luminare

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am I the only one that thinks this will never really happen?  it's likely being awarded the first teleport terminal or first station for a train to the planet jupiter, 

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am I the only one that thinks this will never really happen?  it's likely being awarded the first teleport terminal or first station for a train to the planet jupiter, 

 

If they can build a spaceport in freakin Brownsville, Texas then they can build one in Houston

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am I the only one that thinks this will never really happen? it's likely being awarded the first teleport terminal or first station for a train to the planet jupiter,

Even if it is built I have doubts that the renderings they've released will be the final product. Wouldn't surprise me if it was watered down drastically.

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Brownsville is really not a spaceport. In the future, it may become one. But it is being built by SpaceX as a private launch site for their use in the immediate future. They have a vehicle to launch today - well its grounded but many around JSC are thinking they will launch again in the first half of 2016.

 

The vision for commercial spaceports are for future customers that don't exist. I'm not completely negative on Houston getting a "license", if something does come of this nationally, we have our foot in the door and be in the forefront.

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Even if it is built I have doubts that the renderings they've released will be the final product. Wouldn't surprise me if it was watered down drastically.

 

How about yall quell your Battered Houston Syndrome for a least a few days? Why would you invest that much into something like a spaceport and water it down.

 

I literally just explained this just a moment ago. Plus when are yall going to stop taking such personal ownership of images like these. Images like these are to get you excited and prepped for what is POSSIBLE! Not whats actually going to happen. It could be better or it could be the exact same thing, or a completely different design, but people on here need to stop with this sense of ownership in images which are expressly to give a visualization of what COULD BE! So why not just be excited about the possibilities? Why can't threads like these be fun and talk about the possibilities of something like this especially when 85 to 90% of the people on here are not even in the design industry at all. There are images like these that come and go all the time! Its part of the business.

 

Probably not. Often owners of a proposed project will hire a separate firm to do pre-design work just to get the basic idea of things and come to grips with the scope. There are whole firms that just work on master plans like these.

 

I would love to see this as a major international competition. Design a spaceport for space city. It sells itself! There so many great firms that could do it. I would love to see something that would attract the BIG's, OMA's, SOM's, Zaha's, and Foster's of the world.

 

Other cities might be designing new fancy airports, but only Houston will be able to say they have a specially designed public use spaceport!

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Sierra Nevada is bidding on the second round of contracts from NASA to cover cargo deliveries to the ISS from 2017 to 2024, which is expected to be awarded later this year. The Obama administration had extended the life of the ISS to 2024.

 

Assuming they win it, the cargo version of their Dream Chaser would land at Ellington space port per the agreement they signed earlier this year with the HAS. If that's the case, I would imagine that would help fast track development and firm up the final design of the Space Port.

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Actually a Brownsville spaceport makes a lot more than one at Ellington Field.

 

To take maximum advantage of Earth's rotation, you want a spaceport to be as close to the equator as possible, and you want the rocket to go east.  Also, you want nothing but sea (or empty desert or something that won't have any people or property to harm) over the route it will initially go.

 

This means you want to be as far south as possible, and you want the ocean to the east.  Not only do you have a populated area just east of Ellington, but directly east would take you over southern Louisiana.  This means launches would have to be angled to the south a bit.

 

I can see this being used for suborbital flights, but anything to go into orbit or out into space would probably make more sense to launch from Brownsville (or Cape Canaveral), unless they need the particular orbit that Ellington would be ideal for.

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For Ellington they are talking horizontal takeoff, the factors you are discussing are factors in vertical takeoff (I will say I don't exactly how they play in to horizontal takeoff). You also left off inclination which plays a bigger factor then orbital velocity. If you want more earth coverage for LEO satellites (or the space station though inclination there was also driven by the russians and soyuz injection) you want to launch at a higher latitude, or take up propulsion to get to that inclination post launch.

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I believe this will happen. It may not be built like what's pictured in the renderings, but I have full confidence that Houston will have a Spaceport. Also take a look at the Spaceport in Midland,TX. It's being built in phases.

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http://www.bizjournals.com/houston/blog/2015/09/business-incubator-coworking-space-to-launch-at.html

 

The city of Houston plans to include a new incubator and co-working space on the grounds of the new spaceport located at Ellington Airport.

 

Plans are still very early, airport and city officials point out, but the idea is to have small and large companies housed on the same campus to collaborate. The co-working space would conceivably include an incubation space for early-stage companies, more permanent offices for developing companies and even larger facilities for companies that need room to mass produce their products, Mario DiazHouston Airport System's aviation director, said during a presentation at a startup happy hour Sept. 22.

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The Word game changer get thrown around alot on here but if this does come to fruitation the result effects it would have on the area truly could be in terms of residential, retail, etc

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http://www.yourhoustonnews.com/deer_park/news/purchase-of-building-at-ellington-a-key-step-in-houston/article_0aa0ac20-8448-542f-a203-802c5c7c574e.html

 

An important step in the functional launch of the Houston Spaceport was taken on Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2015, when Houston City Council members approved the $6.9 million purchase of an aerospace engineering building and land adjacent to Ellington Airport (EFD).

 

Using airport funds for the purchase, the 53,000 square foot building will house a shared use manufacturing and general office facility, and already has prospective tenants. The Houston Airport System (HAS) has received a letter of intent to lease from both Intuitive Machines and UK-based Catapult Satellite Applications, and expects to receive others in the near future.

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http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/nasa-partners-with-houston-airport-system-in-development-of-spaceport-300169038.html

 

HOUSTONOct. 29, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- News media are invited to visit NASA's Johnson Space Center (JSC) onWednesday, Nov. 4, at 1 p.m. to witness a landmark event as NASA and the Houston Airport System (HAS) formally enter a development agreement to provide NASA expertise and training at Houston's new Spaceport installation. The event will be preceded by a press conference.
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All I really want is the dope-af upgrades that were shown in The Martian. Call me when we've got Neo Space Age architecture

 

Baby steps.

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http://www.houstonpublicmedia.org/articles/news/2015/12/21/131889/first-step-for-houstons-spaceport-new-control-tower/

 

Ellington Airport has been awarded a state grant to assist in building a new air traffic control tower. Once completed, it will not only support military operations, but will support the Houston Spaceport Project.

The current control tower at Ellington was damaged in a 2008 hurricane. And it’s old. 

Construction on the new tower is slated to start next summer, to be open for operations in the fall of 2017.

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So now that Sierra Nevada scored a contract for the second round of Commercial Cargo Resupply missions, I expect we'll see some important steps on the Spaceport happening soon.

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Houston to Select Design-Builder for Ellington Spaceport by December

 

https://www.virtualbx.com/construction-preview/24842-houston-to-select-design-builder-for-ellington-spaceport-by-december.html

 



Houston (Harris County) - The Houston Airport System (HAS) has begun the process of selecting a design-build firm to install infrastructure for a spaceport at Ellington Airport, and the intent is to have one under contract by December.

 

Contractors were invited June 16 to submit Statements of Qualifications and they are due July 27. The selected contractor would constitute the third component of a development team for the construction of what has already been designated the 10th spaceport site in the United States.

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Any Haifers associated with NASA or something similar? Like to hear your opinions. Do not know what to make of this. It certainly looks good. It would be incredible if the application lives up to name.

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OK so this is just to hire a design build firm for only the infrastructure, i.e. the storm water drains, streets, electrical duct banks, gas lines and water lines. Not the actual spaceport. Just wanted to make sure we're all on the same page. Only if they iron out their questions for the latter sub phases.

At least thats what I get out of this invitation.

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