Denver Could Soon Have a New Transit Center, and It Involves Spaceships

Front Range Airport is a small airport located off I-70 in Watkins, Colorado, just a few miles East of Denver.  As airports go, it is pretty quite.  There are no scheduled flights, just general aviation, and it isn’t nearly as busy as Denver International Airport, Centennial Airport, or Rocky Mountain Airport.  If a new proposal sees its way through to reality, the airport may become a much busier place.

Photo credit for both photos: HDR and Luis Vidal + Architects

In 2011, Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper proposed the Front Range Airport become Colorado’s First Spaceport.  While the idea may seem to be high in the sky (pun intended), many people think that it could be a reality.  According to CNBC, 10 other locations in the country already have a spaceport license, and with Denver’s wide-open spaces and the second largest aerospace industry of all 50 states, a spaceport could hold the potential to thrive.  Since the spacecraft would nearly certainly take off horizontally like planes, air traffic control doesn’t see any issues with the plan, even though Front Range Airport is only six miles away from Denver International Airport.

In addition to research and satellite technology which would use the spaceport if built, in the future passenger space travel could be a real thing.  Virgin Galactic estimates that a flight from New York to Sydney, Australia could be completed in two hours, which means flight from Denver to China or Europe would only be about an hour long.

The airport first applied for a license in 2012 and they are in the final stages of FAA approval.