Capital University News, California State University, Sacramento
Rep. Matsui, campus
officials tout plans for
Science and Space Center
Preliminary plans and concepts for a new Science and Space
Center at Sacramento State were showcased today during a campus visit by Congresswoman
The planned center will contain an observatory, planetarium, hands-on science
exploration areas and laboratories for student interested in astronomy research.
Congresswoman Matsui and her husband, the late Congressman Robert Matsui, were
instrumental in securing $1.5 million for the facility, including a $950,000
appropriation Doris Matsui helped obtain this year.
Sacramento is the nation’s largest metropolitan area without a state-of-the-art
planetarium. These types of facilities are considered crucial to California’s
ability to continue as a science and technology leader because astronomy acts
a “gateway” that builds students’ interest.
"I am very excited to see the initial concepts for Sacramento State's new
Science and Space Center and planetarium,” Matsui said. “As the
largest metro area without a state-of-the-art planetarium, this upgrade to the
University's facilities is very welcome. They demonstrate the energizing directions
Sacramento State is going in and its commitment to education."
Sacramento State President Gonzalez said: “This project will provide modern
facilities for our students, and inspire thousands of future students to major
in other science and technology related fields. Astronomy is a ‘gateway’
that gets students interested in these high-demand fields. And the Capital Region
needs more people with that type of expertise in our elementary schools and
high schools – as well as in private industry - to ensure our economic
The Space and Science Center will include a wide range of equipment including
solar and astronomical telescopes, observatory domes and high-volume lab servers.
Part of it will house the Center for Mathematics and Science Education to support
and enhance the skills of more than 1,000 K-12 mathematics and science teachers
each year. And it is expected to attract about 25,000 visitors to the campus
The facility will be built with non-state funds, and cost an estimated $10 million.
In addition to the federal funding, other support for the project so far has
come from the late Chien Yuan Hu and the late Royal and Kirsten Vanderberg.
Hu, who was a professor in the University’s physics department, provided
$200,000 in a $2 million bequest to fund a Foucault pendulum in the center.
Royal Vanderberg was also a professor of physics, and the Vanderbergs provided
$200,000 to establish a planetarium fund.
If all goes as planned, the University hopes to break ground on the project
within the next year.
High-resolution images of the initial plans and artist concepts are available
for download at www.csus.edu/news/imagedownload.
Media assistance is available by contacting the Sacramento State Public Affairs
Office at (916) 278-6156 or Matsui’s office at (916) 498-5600.
State University, Sacramento Public Affairs
6000 J Street Sacramento, CA 95819-6026 (916) 278-6156
California State University, Sacramento Public Affairs
6000 J Street Sacramento, CA 95819-6026 (916) 278-6156 firstname.lastname@example.org