Room With A (Spectacular) View

A dazzling, new crystal palace brings the universe down to earth

When New York City's American Museum of Natural History announced a few years ago that it would be rebuilding its hallowed Hayden Planetarium from the ground up, lots of New Yorkers screamed to the heavens--and Neil de Grasse Tyson, the planetarium's recently appointed director, couldn't blame them. For more than 60 years, the Hayden had been bringing the stars to sky-deprived city dwellers, and its frumpy dome, slapped onto the museum's north side, had played host to generations of visitors. That included Tyson himself, whose career as an astrophysicist was first inspired by visits to the Hayden from his boyhood Bronx.


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