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Houston Astrodome marks 48th anniversary

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

It's a big birthday for an important piece of Houston's skyline. The Astrodome opened to the public almost 50 years ago, and as county officials debate its future, we're taking a look back at its history.

On April 9 1964, the Astrodome opened its doors as the first indoor ballpark in the world.

The concept was born out of a desire to lure a professional baseball team to the bayou city. That plan seemed to work and the Colt .45s played their inaugural season in 1962. The same year, crews broke ground on the Astrodome.

The team played in Colt Stadium, a temporary stadium for its first three seasons before construction was complete on the dome. The Astrodome was given its name in honor of Houston's significance to the country's space program and in the same theme, the Colt .45s were renamed the Astros.

The Astros last called it home field in 1999. It's been closed to the public since 2009, deemed too dangerous to occupy in its current state.

Since then, there's been an ongoing debate about future of the landmark. Most recently, a proposal has been made by the Texans and The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo to demolish the dome and replace it with a parking lot.

In the end, the decision will likely end up on a referendum for voters to decide. But for now we wish the Astrodome a happy 48th birthday.
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