NASA has selected Space Florida, the aerospace economic development agency for the state of Florida, for negotiations toward a partnership agreement to maintain and operate the historic Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF).
NASA Administrator Charles Bolden and the director of NASA's Kennedy SpaceCenter, Robert Cabana, announced the selection during a news conference Fridayat Kennedy's Visitor Complex in Florida.
"This agreement will continue to expand Kennedy's viability as a multi-user spaceport and strengthen the economic opportunities for Florida and the nation," Bolden said. "It also continues to demonstrate NASA's commitment and progress in building a strong commercial space industry so that American companies are providing safe, reliable, and cost-effective transportation to and from the International Space Station and other low Earth orbit destinations."
NASA issued a Request For Information document in August 2012 to identify new and innovative ways to use the SLF for current and future commercial and government mission activities. Space Florida's proposal is aligned closely with Kennedy's vision for creating a multi-user spaceport.
The SLF opened for flights in 1976. The concrete runway is 15,000 feet long and 300 feet wide.