Unfortunately, the Shuttle will NOT be coming to Washington State. The decision was made and the four shuttles will go, one each, to the Udvar-Hay part of the Smithsonian, The Intrepid Air and Space Museum in New York, Kennedy Space Center in Florida, and, the most disappointing to me, the California Science Center in Los Angeles. Actually, two of those are disappointing.
The Intrepid is an aircraft carrier, that shuttle will NOT fit on a hangar deck. I assume they plan on housing it in some shore based facility. Still, so close to the water's edge, makes me nervous for a national treasure. New York in not a large island, so the facility will likely bring a huge price tag and being on the other end of the country, I will not be visiting it often. (This last point is the one that I REALLY think NASA should have taken into account.)
As for the California Science Center, well, I've never heard of it until today. Honestly, I assumed each state had one, but California's was not one I'd really heard of before.
But let's look at the map, shall we? Shouldn't the shuttles be spread out more? Maybe one in each corner of the US? Or maybe one in the middle, say...the USAF Museum in Ohio? Or something closer to absolute center like Kansas or Nebraska? Obviously, NASA was determined to reach the largest masses of people, but the WEST COAST is growing. Give us a chance. Washington could have housed an orbiter in style.
You can see more here, on the NASA site. And here you can read at "A Field Guide To American Spacecraft" from last week, this fellow works for NASA and he thought Seattle had a fair chance, too.