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Largest telescope in Phoenix getting new home after new funding from state

The observatory is only one part of a four phase, multi-million dollar project.
Credit: International Dark Sky Discovery Center

FOUNTAIN HILLS, Ariz. — The largest telescope in the metro-Phoenix area is getting a new state-of-the-art home, thanks to state-allocated funds.

The International Dark Sky Discovery Center in Fountain Hills received $2.5 million from the state's budget to build a first-class domed observatory, called the Dark Sky Observatory, to house the telescope. 

“Our entire Board is deeply grateful for Representative John Kavanagh’s efforts on our behalf,” said Joe Bill, president of IDSDC. “By working to inform his legislative colleagues how the IDSDC will be a state-wide asset, he secured funding support that will enable us to advance to Phase Two.” 

The observatory is one part of a four-phase, $18 million campaign started in January to redesign the Discovery Center. The other phases to redesign include the Hyperspace Planetarium, the Inspiration Theater, and the Immersion Zone with interactive exhibits. 

The Discovery Center said only 25% of the needed funds have been raised to complete the entire project. The center is looking for additional funds that can be donated here.

"The International Dark Sky Discovery Center is an exciting opportunity for students and amateur star-gazers alike,” said Gov. Doug Ducey. “The Center will be another tremendous asset to keep our state at the forefront of STEM education." 

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