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USS Requin submarine will close for renovations, reopen the holidays

 


Improvements will be made this fall to the exterior of USS Requin, the Cold War-era submarine moored at Carnegie Science Center. The submarine will be closed starting Sept. 14. While the actual duration of the project is weather-dependent, USS Requin will re-open in time for the holidays and will be open daily – weather permitting -- through Jan. 3, 2016.

Work will include clearing away peeling paint, preparing the surface, and giving the submarine a fresh coat of paint. The actual painting is anticipated to begin in October. Restoring Requin’s exterior coatings will not only improve the vessel’s appearance, it will also serve as a protective measure, helping to shield it from corrosion.

“Our USS Requin submarine is a true national treasure,” said Ron Baillie, co-director of Carnegie Science Center. “It’s been an honor to have this ship as part of our offerings since the science center opened here in 1991. In fact, the submarine arrived 25 years ago this week – on September 4, 1990 -- and opened to the public before the building opened.”

“Each year, about 155,000 visitors tour Requin,” said Ann Metzger, the Science Center’s other co-director. “We expect large crowds during the visit of the LST ship on the North Shore, and during the United States Submariners Convention next week. The Requin is a source of inspiration and fascination to all generations.”

Funding for the restoration was made possible through a grant by the Redevelopment Authority of Allegheny County and the Commonwealth Financing Authority, as well as through a donation from Al Neupaver of Wabtec Corporation.

Pittsburgh’s hometown paint company, PPG PAINTS™, donated high performance coatings used to refresh the exterior of Requin.

“PPG is thrilled to partner with Carnegie Science Center to help preserve Requin for future generations of visitors,” said Diane Kappas, vice president, PPG Protective and Marine Coatings, Americas. “For many years, the submarine has served as a significant place of learning and exploration in our hometown, and now its history can continue to live on with the help of a fresh coat of PPG paint.” 

The submarine will continue to be open for tours until mid-September, with daily hours from 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., weather permitting. Though the Science Center is closed on Tuesday, Sept. 8, the submarine will also be open from 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. with tickets available at the submarine along the North Shore river walk.

When the submarine is closed for restoration, visitors are encouraged to take a virtual tour of the submarine via video in the Science Center’s River View Café.

A self-guided tour of USS Requin illustrates how 80 men used their expertise, humor, and sheer ingenuity to carve out a rough and adventurous life during Requin’s lengthy defense and scientific missions, some of which are still classified to this day. State-of-the-art and battle ready when she set out just days before the end of World War II, USS Requin holds the distinction of being the Navy’s first Radar Picket submarine.

 

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