Its all about politics. How else can you explain New York City getting a space shuttle to sit on top of a aircraft carrier and Houston - home of the Johnson Space Center; gets nothing.
New Frackin' York?!
President Obama must have been paying back something to Senator Charles "Chucky" Schumer(D) for New York to get the shuttlecraft Enterprise.
Right now, the Enterprise is in the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.
To read the NY Daily News article about efforts underway to change this out come, the senator said, "Fughgeddaboutit." Actually, the NYD News said in the opening paragraph of their news article the following: "A peeved Utah Congressman, joined by a bunch of poor-loser Texans, is mounting a campaign to yank the NASA shuttle Enterprise from the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum."
Republican Rep Jason Chaffetz of Utah is pushing a bill that will reshuffle the final resting places of the shuttle fleet. Namely, one of the shuttles (either Enterprise or Endeavour) will go to Houston, Texas. The space shuttle Discovery will replace the Enterprise at the The Smithsonian Institutions National Air and Space Museum's Steven F. Udvar facility-in Hazy Center, Va.. Cape Canaveral/ Kennedy Space Center in Florida, gets to keep the space shuttle Atlantis. And the California Science Center in Los Angeles would get the remaining shuttle.
As for this Texan. I am somewhat resigned to the fact that Texas will not get a space shuttle do to the fact that our state did not - and still doesn't support President Obama very much. But Obama can and does expect New York to carry his waste water with loving care at his beck and call.
While the Enterprise never made it up into orbit - it was only a prototype test airframe to prove the shuttle concept. To leave Houston out of the picture was the most disturbing thing about this sorry mess. To my fellow Star Trek fans - don't jump the gun too fast next time when it comes time to name another spacecraft after a famous fictional spacecraft.
1. NY Daily News. "Star wars: Rep calls for Houston to get NASA shuttle, not Intrepid; Schumer says 'Fugheddaboutit'" by Richard Sisk. April 15, 2011. (http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/2011/04/15/2011-04-15_rep_calls_for_houston_to_get_nasa_shuttle_enterprise_not_intrepid_schumer_says_f.html)
2. photo is AP/Lisa Nipp.