Photos: War Stories

(page 12 of 12)

The Pearl Harbor Visitor Center, seen from the deck of the Bowfin. If the new facility struck me as being disappointingly modest, given the story it tells, Rupp explains that “a huge amount of work, dollars and design effort went into an extensive and complicated foundation” so that the new structure wouldn’t sink the way the previous one did.

There is a forest of concrete pilings, nine or ten stories deep, underneath the two-story buildings you see here. That’s what was needed to keep the building stable on a shoreline of landfill. “Everyone would’ve loved to take some money out of the ground and put it in the buildings,” says Rupp.

The new center is everything its owners, the National Park Service and the U.S. Navy, dreamed it could be. It’s a vastly improved experience for 1.5 million visitors a year. Readers, what do you think? Love the new visitor center? Hate it? Let us know:

Haven’t seen it yet? You definitely should! For information on visiting the Pearl Harbor Memorial Center, click here.