Endeavour flies by Golden Gate Bridge, other sites

By Alicia Chang

Associated Press

Published: Friday, Sept. 21 2012 11:55 a.m. MDT

Under White House orders to explore beyond low-Earth orbit, NASA is hitching rides on Russian rockets to the orbiting laboratory until private companies can provide regular service.

Endeavour is the second of three remaining shuttles to head to its retirement home. In April, Discovery arrived at the Smithsonian Institution's hangar in Virginia. Atlantis, which closed out the shuttle program, will stay in Florida where it will be towed a short distance to the Kennedy Space Center's visitor center in the fall.

Endeavour will remain at an airport hangar for several weeks as crews ready the shuttle for its own road trip. Unlike Atlantis, it will creep through city streets to the California Science Center near downtown.

Some 400 trees will be cleared along the 12-mile route to make room, a move that has riled some residents in affected neighborhoods. Museum officials have pledged to replant double the number of chopped trees.

Associated Press writers Tom Verdin and Juliet Williams in Sacramento contributed to this report. Alicia Chang can be followed at http://twitter.com/SciWriAlicia

Online:

Shuttle history: http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/shuttle

California Science Center: http://www.californiasciencecenter.org

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