Airline and museum officials declined to disclose precisely how much the renovation cost. It was funded by gifts from American Airlines, aircraft manufacturer Boeing and model aircraft maker PacMin.
The renovation also will give visitors a chance to get an up-close look at the new $300 million American Airlines headquarters, which is being built adjacent to the museum and is scheduled to open next year. The new campus, also known as the Robert L Crandall Global Support Campus, will house roughly 12,000 of American’s roughly 25,000 North Texas employees, and will feature a town square, bike paths and other amenities.
“The museum connects us with the community,” said Jonathan Pierce, American director of campus culture and change. “It also preserves American Airlines history and brings together all our team members as sort of a cultural rock.”
Also among the new features is a baggage loading exhibit, where guests can try their hand at loading up an aircraft against the clock.
And, for old-school aviation fans, the C.R. Smith Museum — which originally opened in 1993 — will still have several features that have been there for years. Among them is a restored 1940s DC-3 that is still on display — with curtains and other amenities giving visitors a taste of what it was like to travel in the post-World War II era.
The museum typically draws 25,000 to 38,000 visitors per year, and also performs aviation education outreach at Fort Worth-area schools.
Regular museum hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. Tickets are $9 for adults, $6 for seniors and children.
For more information visit the museum website or call 817-967-5922.