Space Center Lobby Out of this World

Sept. 1, 2016
The Kennedy Space Center Astronaut Encounter underwent massive renovation and rebranding, which included a cohesive installation project that included flooring, wall coverings and lighting.
Merritt Island, Fla.
Design Shop
© Umbris Photography

The Kennedy Space Center Astronaut Encounter, a multimedia presentation that features live appearances from astronauts who have launched, landed, lived and worked aboard the space shuttle and/or International Space Station, recently underwent a massive renovation and rebranding project.

Until recently, the multi-room national treasure, which is housed in a 25-year-old building, featured a dated lobby and holding area, 300-seat theater, restroom facilities and hallways.

The major challenge was in the form of hexagonal tiles in the lobby/holding area. Every tile and angle was cut down 0.75-in., and LED lighting strips were installed between them as a replacement for grout joint. In order to achieve this in the given timeline, two specialists worked around the clock.

INFLUENCE:Operational 365 days a year, time was of the essence to strip the space and rebuild. The result is a futuristic design that incorporates the latest in flooring technology. The astronauts that appear here now have a home that matches their own impressive tenures. SOLUTION:In order to provide a more immersive experience, the Kennedy Space Center worked with INSTALL member Mr. David’s Flooring International and Florida-based design services firm Design Shop, to completely transform the space. In total, four separate crews collaborated on the project, creating a cohesive installation project that included lighting, wallcoverings, seating and more. Electricians worked in unison with the flooring installation crew in the lobby, and seating installers actually trailed the carpet layers as they completed each section of the theater. The reimagined and revitalized Kennedy Space Center Astronaut Encounter center will allow thousands of young would-be astronauts, families and tourists to experience the thrill of space flight for decades to come. This national treasure has entered a new and exciting era, one that looks to the future. null

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