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British billionaire Richard Branson opened the world’s first-ever commercial spaceport in the New Mexico desert – designed by Foster + Partners and URS

Home » architects » British billionaire Richard Branson opened the world’s first-ever commercial spaceport in the New Mexico desert – designed by Foster + Partners and URS

British billionaire Richard Branson opened the world’s first-ever commercial spaceport in the New Mexico desert – designed by Foster + Partners and URS

| architects | October 18, 2011

British billionaire Richard Branson opened the world’s first-ever commercial spaceport in the New Mexico desert, the new home for his company, Virgin Galactic.

The eccentric businessman, with usual flair, sported a black jacket and waves of hair flying as he inaugurated the building by breaking a champagne bottle against a hanger building, while rappelling down the side of it.

“Spaceport America,” as the site is called, will serve “as the operating hub for Virgin Galactic and is expected to house up to two WhiteKnightTwos and five SpaceShipTwos, in addition to all of Virgin?s astronaut preparation facilities and mission control,” said the company in a statement to the press.

About 150 people already booked for travel on the first flights to orbit attended the event, said the company.

Also attending were head of Virgin Galactic George Whitesides, commercial director Stephen Attenborough, and famed US astronaut — and second human being to step on the moon — Buzz Aldrin.

Branson last month said he hoped to launch a vessel into space within the next 12 months, which he said would kick off an era of commercial space travel.

“The mother ship is finished… The rocket tests are going extremely well, and so I think that we’re now on track for a launch within 12 months of today,” he told CNN’s Piers Morgan in September.

“About an hour between Los Angeles and London is not completely out of the question,” Branson said, adding that it will likely take many years before the company can offer such a service.

In the meantime, Virgin has sold some 430 tickets for space travel — at $200,000 a pop — for an estimated $86 million.

A number of private companies are rushing to fill the gap left by NASA, which ended its 30-year shuttle program in July with the completion of the final Atlantis mission to the International Space Station (ISS).

Photos & Renderings of Spaceport here.

 

Source: Breitbart

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After working at various design practices on a full-time and freelance basis, and starting his own design firm, David McFadden saw that there was a gap to be filled in the industry. In 1984, he created an expansive hub for architects and hiring firms to sync up, complete projects, and mutually benefit. That hub was Consulting For Architects Inc., which enabled architects to find meaningful design work, while freeing hiring firms from tedious hiring-firing cycles. This departure from the traditional, more rigid style of employer-employee relations was just what the industry needed - flexibility and adaption to modern work circumstances. David has successfully advised his clients through the trials and tribulations of four recessions – the early 80’s, the early 90’s, the early 2000’s, and the Great Recession of 2007.

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