Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center: Wikis


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Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center

Aerial view of the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center
Established 2003
Location Chantilly, Virginia, United States
Type Air and Space Museum
Visitor figures 1,010,255 (2007)
Director vacant
Public transit access Shuttle bus between museum and Dulles International Airport

The Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum (NASM)'s annex at Washington Dulles International Airport in the Chantilly area of Fairfax County, Virginia, United States.

The Center was made possible by a US$65 million gift in October 1999 to the Smithsonian Institution by Steven F. Udvar-Hazy, an immigrant from Hungary and co-founder of the International Lease Finance Corporation.[1] Construction of the Center, which was designed by HOK, required 15 years of preparation and was built by Hensel Phelps Construction Co.[2] Site Civil Engineering design was performed by Patton Harris Rust and Associates, Inc. of Chantilly, Virginia.

On December 2, 2008, The Center received a gift of $6 million for Phase Two of the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center from Airbus Americas Inc. The gift was the largest corporate gift to the Smithsonian Institution in 2008. Phase Two of the Udvar-Hazy Center will be dedicated to the behind-the-scenes care of the Smithsonian’s collection of aircraft, spacecraft, related artifacts and archival materials.

Entrance View

The new wing will include:

  • Mary Baker Engen Restoration Hangar: spacious enough to accommodate several aircraft at one time with a second-floor viewing area designed to give visitors a behind-the-scenes look at work rarely seen by the public.
  • Archives: the foremost collection of documentary records of the history, science and technology of aeronautics and space flight will be housed in a single location for the first time, providing researchers with ample space and equipment.
  • Emil Buehler Conservation Laboratory: will provide conservators much-needed space to develop and execute specialized preservation strategies for artifacts.
  • Collections Processing Unit: a dedicated loading dock and specially designed secure area for initial inspection and analysis of artifacts.[3]

NASM has always had more artifacts than could be displayed at the main museum on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Most of the collection had been stored, unavailable to visitors, at the Paul E. Garber Preservation, Restoration, and Storage Facility in Silver Hill, Prince George's County, Maryland. Plans call for additional phases that will move the restoration facility and the museum archives from their current location at the Garber facility to the Udvar-Hazy Center.



Space shuttle Enterprise in the space wing of Udvar-Hazy
Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird

Opened in December 2003, the Udvar-Hazy Center displays historic aviation and space artifacts, especially items too large for the National Air and Space Museum's building on the National Mall, including:

Dassault Falcon 20

The museum is still in the process of installing exhibits, but 163 aircraft and 154 large space artifacts are already on display as of November 2008[6], and plans call for the eventual installation of over 200 aircraft.[7] It also contains an IMAX theater.


Entrance to the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center

The Udvar-Hazy Center is located near Dulles Airport. From downtown Washington, D.C., the easiest route runs from I-66 West to VA 267 (Dulles Toll Road) West to VA 28 South, then follow the signs to a specially-marked exit off of VA 28 that leads directly to the museum parking lot.

As in other Smithsonian museums, admission is free, but there is a fee to park (currently $15 per vehicle) at Udvar-Hazy because of its close proximity to Dulles Airport; the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority requested a parking fee higher than the least expensive parking fee at Dulles due to the possibility of travelers taking advantage of lower-cost parking at a non-airport location, as well as the financial and insurance liabilities associated with airport patrons parking on non-airport property.

While it is possible to get to Udvar-Hazy from the National Air and Space Museum using mass transit, there currently is no direct transit route on either the DC-based Metro Rail or bus system to the museum. However, DC Metro service will become available to the Dulles International Airport with the completion of the Silver Line in 2016 with the possibility of transportation being offered to the museum. Visitors wishing to take mass transit to Udvar-Hazy from downtown DC should take Metro Bus #5A to Dulles Airport, then catch the Virginia Regional Transit shuttle bus to the museum. The entire commute takes approximately 40 minutes. Shuttle service directly from the National Air and Space museum on the National Mall to the Udvar-Hazy Center was discontinued in 2006. The National Air and Space Museum has a flier available to patrons with shuttle bus schedules and bus and route information.

Media appearances

The center makes its first media appearance in the 2009 film Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. The center remained open while filming took place, although certain areas were closed.[8] The SR-71 that is on display in the museum was used as Jetfire, a Decepticon who switches sides to become an Autobot, in the film. In the film, it is misnamed as the National Air & Space Museum.

Photo gallery

Panorama from the central catwalk
Panorama looking at the Concorde aircraft
Panorama from tower
180° View of the James S. McDonnell Space Hangar


  1. ^ Small, L. M. "A century's roar and buzz: Thanks to an immigrant's generosity, the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center opens to the public". In "From the Secretary". Smithsonian. Vol. 34, p. 20.
  2. ^ Triplett, W. "Hold everything!" Smithsonian. Vol. 34, December 2003, p. 59.
  3. ^
  4. ^ BERGER, ERIC (Decenber 7 2009). "Discovery is Smithsonian's". Counting down to who will land a retired shuttle. Retrieved 3 January 2010. 
  5. ^ Dornier Do-335
  6. ^ "Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center Fact Sheet"
  7. ^ "Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center: Looking Ahead" Accessed September 30, 2006
  8. ^ Keith Knight (2008-06-07). "More High-Fliers at Air & Space". The Washington Post. 

External links

Coordinates: 38°54′41.2″N 77°26′38.8″W / 38.911444°N 77.444111°W / 38.911444; -77.444111

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