Chapter 6

Challenge and Change

[117] Going into its second full year, the Gemini Project Office had just finished moving into new quarters. The office had been split between two sites, with project manager James Chamberlin at the Farnsworth & Chambers building (interim headquarters for the Manned Spacecraft Center) and the rest of the Gemini office across the Gulf Freeway in the Houston Petroleum Center. By December 1962, the office had doubled its original staff of 44 and outgrown its former space. Chamberlin and all of his people moved into the old Veterans Administration building on the edge of downtown Houston by 10 December, and the Gemini Procurement Office of MSC's Procurement and Contracts Division followed in March 1963.1

Putting all of Gemini under one roof no doubt helped as the program became more taxing. The early months of 1963 soon showed that many technical problems were far from resolved end that the question of money was not fully settled by the reprogramming efforts. But Gemini's first big worry of the new year had little to do with technology or funding. The Air Force had long been interested in orbital rendezvous and manned space flight, as reflected in its unmanned satellite interceptor project (Saint) and the maneuverable manned Dyna-Soar program. That interest now expanded to include Project Gemini.


1 MSC Announcement No. 135, "Change in Location of Gemini Project Office," 12 Dec. 1962; MSC Announcement No. 153, "Change in Location of Chief, Mercury/Gemini Procurement and Gemini Procurement Office," 7 Feb. 1963; "Manned Spacecraft Center, Houston, Texas, Interim Facilities," MSC, as of 15 Aug. 1963, pp. 193, 201.


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