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Nelson: SpaceX Expansion in Texas is Small Blow for Space Coast

Senator Bill Nelson

Senator Bill Nelson

August 5, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando – Sen. Bill Nelson says there’s still hope for a multi-user spaceport on the Space Coast, even after SpaceX’s decision to expand in Texas rather than Florida.

The Central Florida Democrat says discussions are underway among NASA, the Air Force and Federal Aviation Administration to carve out commercial launch space here.

SpaceX already launches from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and plans to launch from an old shuttle pad at Kennedy Space Center.

But the space company also wants a commercial launch site free of government regulation, which is why it will build a site in Texas. Nelson says it’s a minor blow to the Space Coast.

“SpaceX is only one company, and most of their launch activity is here on the East Coast of Florida.”

SpaceX will launch commercial satellites from Texas.

Among the sites under consideration on the Space Coast is one called Shiloh, where there used to be a citrus community.

It’s in the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. Environmentalists oppose it.

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Amy Green

About Amy Green

Reporter and Producer

Amy Green covers the environment and climate change at WMFE News. She is an award-winning journalist and author whose extensive reporting on the Everglades is featured in the book MOVING WATER, published by Johns Hopkins University Press, and podcast DRAINED, available wherever you get your podcasts. Amy’s ... Read Full Bio »