The U.S.S. Enterprise is boldly going to a new space at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C. The original studio model of the starship Enterprise NCC-1701 used for Star Trek has long been ensconsed in the museum store.
However, come the summer of 2016 — just in time for Star Trek‘s 50th anniversary — the Enterprise will have a fresh home within the museum at the Boeing Milestones of Flight Hall.
The current main hall, Milestones of Flight, has on display such icons of aviation and spaceflight history as the Wright Brothers’ plane, the 1903 Wright Flyer; Charles Lindbergh’s Spirit of St. Louis; and John Glenn’s Mercury capsule, Friendship 7. Milestones of Flight will be the beneficiary of a full renovation and expansion, courtesy of a $30 million donation from the Boeing Company, and will be renamed the Boeing Milestones of Flight Hall. Further, according to the National Air and Space Museum, the overhaul will take into account its revised definition of the word “milestone.” Where once “milestone” meant “the first” in space travel or flight, it will now embrace “an artifact having significant or widespread cultural, historic, scientific or technological impact.”
“Milestones of Flight has done just what the planners had intended. It signaled to every visitor who walked through front door: you are about to have one of the most exciting museum experiences of your life,” said Peter L. Jakab, the museum’s chief curator, in a statement to the New York Times. The renovated space “will deepen the experience with richer description and interpretation of the iconic artifacts on display,” he added, as well as “versatile digital and mobile opportunities to interact with and share content, and a more visitor-friendly design of the space to better showcase the artifacts and make visitor services and information more accessible.”