SAN JOSE (KCBS) – The fate of a big piece of aviation history in Silicon Valley is once again up in the air as a top NASA official is considering whether to demolish Hangar One at Moffett Field.

In a letter released Wednesday, NASA Associate Administrator Woodrow Whitlow Jr. said that he will consider demolishing the iconic hangar, which stands on the east side of Highway 101 in Mountain View. He also plans to consider transferring ownership to a local government, or preserving the gigantic former naval structure.

The letter is a blow to preservationists who thought they were in the clear after NASA announced earlier this year that it had set aside $32 million for preservation of Hangar One.

KCBS’ Matt Bigler Reports:

”This has been a long battle and this is just one more step,” said Steve Williams, founder of the Save Hangar One Committee. “I think that we have the arguments on our side to preserve the building. So I’m optimistic that we’ll get this done.”

A report released in May questioned the wisdom of spending $32 million on Hangar One, especially when it would only pay for the exterior of the building, not heating or electricity or other safety features that will likely cost millions more.

NASA is expected to issue a final plan for the Hangar by November 30th.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

Comments (4)
  1. KarenO says:

    I can understand the concern over the expense of improving and maintaining the hangar, but I hope it can be done. It’s a piece of Bay Area history and I sure would miss seeing it.

  2. Darwin says:

    Tear it down. We have no airships and have not since the 30’s.

  3. Potter says:

    Sounds like the NASA adminstrators are right on schedule to destroy everything they oversee.. Maned space flight, space shuttle, space telescope replacement and now this historic building. 32 million? Not much compared to what the solar panel company in California has stolen. I lived across the street from the one in Akron, amazing structure. Just remember, once it is gone, it is gone forever.

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