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Hundreds of trees will fall to make space for Endeavour

Space Shuttle Endeavour Retires After Its Final Mission

Roberto Gonzalez/Getty Images

Space Shuttle Endeavour is escorted back to a storage building on June 01, 2011 following its final mission. It launched on its first mission May 7, 1992.

Where we're going, we don't need roads. Wait, yes we do.

It's trees versus flying machines on the streets of Los Angeles, and to make space for shuttle Endeavor's upcoming commute across town, crews are chopping down hundreds of pine, ficus and other perennial woody plants.

About 400 trees must be removed in preparation for next month's spaceplane road trip from LAX to the California Science Center. The institution plans to plant two saplings for every toppled timber, but some residents are upset about the skinny tree replacements.

The L.A. Times reports that the route was changed after Leimert  Park residents opposed cutting down dozens of trees planted in honor of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

The retired space shuttle will be transported to Los Angeles International Airport atop a Boeing 747 on Sept. 20, weather permitting, and will remain there until Oct. 12 when it embarks on a non-warp speed tour through the city. 

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Map: Endeavour's final frontier will be a road trip across LA

Endeavor Map

Courtesy of NASA

Endeavor will land in Los Angeles on September 20th and travel through the Southland.

Photo Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls

Space Shuttle Endeavour (STS-134) makes its final landing at the Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF) at Kennedy Space Center, Wednesday, June 1, 2011, in Cape Canaveral, Fla.

Photo credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls

The space shuttle Endeavour is seen on launch pad 39a after the rollback of the Rotating Service Structure (RSS), Sunday, May 15, 2011, at Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla.

Photo credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls

The space shuttle Endeavour is seen on launch pad 39a after the rollback of the Rotating Service Structure (RSS), Sunday, May 15, 2011, at Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla.

Photo credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls

The space shuttle Endeavour is seen on launch pad 39a after the rollback of the Rotating Service Structure (RSS), Sunday, May 15, 2011, at Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla.


Not to be outdone by something as low-tech as LACMA's big rock, the space shuttle Endeavour's is set for a non warp speed tour through Los Angeles in the fall.

Next month, the retired space shuttle will return to its Southern California motherland atop a Boeing 747. The aircraft will deposit Endeavour at Los Angeles International Airport on Sept. 20, weather permitting, and it will remain there until Oct. 12 when it embarks on a very slow, two-day, 13-mile road trip to the California Science Center.

To accomodate the five-story-tall spaceship's city tour, utilities and other street hazards will need to be removed, officials announced Wednesday.

The Shuttle will travel along Manchester Avenue, Crenshaw Boulevard and Martin Luther King Drive to Exposition Park on the weekend of October 13th. 

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