In a significant development, the Cavanaugh Flight Museum at Addison Airport has officially closed its doors, marking the end of more than three decades of showcasing historic aircraft dating back to World War I.

Announced via Facebook on Friday, the museum expressed gratitude to the numerous visitors who enjoyed the collection over the past 30 years, citing the final weekend of 2023 as the last opportunity for the public to experience its exhibits.

The closure comes as the Town of Addison revealed plans to repurpose the museum’s lot for private jet hangars, office space, and parking. The town stated that the new construction aims to enhance the overall value of the airport.

While the museum’s lease was set to expire in 2024, the closure has left aviation enthusiasts disheartened. The town spokesperson, Mary Rosenbleeth, acknowledged the regrettable inability of Addison Airport to accommodate a world-class facility befitting the museum’s historically significant aviation collection.

In response to the closure, the Cavanaugh Flight Museum announced its planes would relocate to the North Texas Regional Airport in Denison, although it remains unclear if they will continue to be publicly displayed.

Aviation enthusiasts, like Scott Copeland, expressed disappointment, emphasizing the rarity of such institutions and the loss felt by the community. Families, who shared a multigenerational love of aviation, also lamented the sudden closure.

Mary Rosenbleeth stated that changes were long overdue, citing a failed 2008 bond election for new museum funding. The lack of suitable space at Addison Airport prompted the City Council to approve a lease extension until 2024, providing the museum time to plan its future.

On its website, the Cavanaugh Flight Museum expressed gratitude to visitors, volunteers, donors, and staff for their role in preserving and showcasing these historic artifacts for generations.

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