Spaceport America & NM Money

The grand opening was celebrated in 2011. However, the promises made years ago turned out to be sky high. Today, the spaceport sits mostly vacant. The Spaceport cost $218,000,000 to build. It now loses about $500,000 each year. Security and Fire Protection alone costs more than two million dollars each year. The taxpayers of two local counties taxed themselves to help pay the bills but have seen no benefit from the nearly idle spaceport. 

Spaceport is built but who will come?

The lagging development, along with competition from heavy hitters like Florida and Texas, is raising new questions about the viability of the $218 billion taxpayer-funded project — as well as the rush by so many states to grab a piece of the commercial spaceport pie.

 

"Right now, the industry is not there to support it," Alex Ignatiev, a University of Houston physics professor and adviser to space companies, said of the list of planned and proposed spaceports across America.

Failure to Launch

One of the poorest states in the nation has invested nearly a quarter of a billion dollars and 10 years in creating a hub for Richard Branson’s space tourism company, Virgin Galactic. Some see it as the crown jewel of a new space age while others call it a carnival for the 1 percent — but with persistent delays and mounting financial strain, Spaceport America is just trying to avoid becoming New Mexico’s costliest, most futuristic ghost town

Virgin Galactic Builds Factories Elsewhere

After convincing New Mexico to spend $218 Million Dollars to build a Spaceport for his Virgin Galactic Space Tourist venture, Richard Branson could not find a way to build his new factoires there and decided to build open them in California! In fact, despite its futuristic spaceport, New Mexico has been unable to convert their spaceport into space factory jobs.

Could Virgin Galactic's Spaceport America be put up for sale?

"I don’t know who the potential buyers would be, but whatever proceeds we receive could be used to paying down the debt New Mexico committed to when we built the place," said State Senator George Muñoz, the sponsor of a bill to put the commercial spaceport up for sale. "There was a lot of hoopla before that if 'We build it, they will come,' but it’s been several years now and nobody’s shown up yet. New Mexican taxpayers are continuing to foot the bill for a $250 million empty facility."

Spaceport Woes Bedevil New Mexico

“Overall, I think the general public feels let down from the promises made,” said Jia Apple, one of the owners of Passion Pie Cafe in Truth or Consequences. She said that although she likes that some of the tax increase has gone to education, “I think probably there was a lot of false promises made. I don’t know if we know the overall outcome yet. But the general feeling is letdown.”

Welcome to the Ghosttown of Spaceport America

Five years from now, this hunk of remote ground will be the place for shuttling tourists to suborbital space, launching small satellites, and serving as a hub for all things new space. Or so the tenants of Spaceport America and the New Mexico state government hope. But right now, the easiest thing to notice about Spaceport America is that it's empty. There's a full-scale model of SpaceShipTwo in an otherwise empty hangar and a garage full of firetrucks for emergencies that aren't happening yet

Spaceport America Wants $2 Million More From Taxpayers For Its Space Tourism Fantasy

Spaceport America Needs $2,000,000 from New Mexico this year to make ends in 2016.  New Mexico does not have the money . . .

Arizona beats out Spaceport America for new company

TUCSON, ARIZONA – An Arizona county has beat out Spaceport America in vying to host operations for a balloon spaceflight company. A $15 million incentives package to bring World View Enterprises to southern Arizona along with 400 jobs for the Tucson area. The incentives awarded Tuesday include building a 120,000-square-foot headquarters facility the company will lease, along with a spaceport and manufacturing space.

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Spaceport America is an idea that is long before its time. What is the future of space tourism when the cheapest flights start at $95,000 $150,000? Just how many people can afford the $200,000 (now $250,000) that Virgin Galactic will charge?

 

How many space tourists does it take to pay off a $218 million Spaceport?

 

How many space tourism spaceports already are licensed? 

 

Are there space tourism spaceports in other countries?

 

Even Richard Branson opened his own spaceship factory in California. Is there any guaranty required of spaceport operators to make sure they deliver the job?

 

How could the State of New Mexico put all its eggs in one basket with a single customer?

 

Could Spaceport Camden lease its grounds for car commercials like Spaceport America is having to do to generate income?

 

How long will the two counties have to pay a higher tax to subsidize Spaceport America?

 

Could this be the fate of Spaceport Camden?

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