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Visiting the Planetarium


Planetarium Etiquette

During full-dome presentations, whether for a planetarium show or a classroom presentation, the planetarium must be pitch black. All laptops, cell phones, and other devices which emit light must be shut or turned off, the entrance doors will be locked, and black-out curtains will be drawn across the entrance and exit doors. Anyone wishing to enter the room must do so prior to the start of the presentation, or they will be unable to enter at all (in classes which have a break, there will be access during the break). Whether room access will be available during partial-dome presentations is uncertain, and it will depend upon the willingness of the lecturer to allow disruptions.

No food or or gum or drink is allowed in any room in Building D. This rule will be strictly enforced in the planetarium. The only exception is that you can bring plain water in a plastic bottle with a lid or cap into the planetarium.


The LBCC Planetarium is located in Room D326, on the third floor of the D building, on the LAC campus, near the northwest corner of Clark Avenue and Carson Street. The planetarium classroom is approximately fifty-feet wide, forty-feet deep, and thirty-feet high. The height accomodates a thirty-five-foot diameter hemispherical dome, which serves as the screen for the projection system. The top of the dome and its steel support rings extend into the pyramidal structure shown in the aerial photo, below. The patinated copper dome atop the pyramid announces the location of the planetarium.

Aerial photographic image of Building D


Aerial photo of Building D. The dome and truncated pyramid at the top show the location of the planetarium. The white dome at the left is the observing area for astronomy lab classes and open houses. (Image from


Map of D building location


Map of the area near the D building (a map of a larger area is shown at Parking, below), showing metered parking (circled P's) and vending machines for purchasing one-day parking permits (red triangles). The D building is the third building from the northwest corner of Clark Avenue and Carson Avenue. (image from the LBCC LAC map)


View of Building D from northwest


A view of the D building from the northwest. The large structure at the top is the planetarium classroom.



Handicapped Access

There are elevators on the east and south sides of the D building. The D building floor plan below shows the first floor of the D building, and selected portions of the third floor (highlighted in blue), with North at the top, as in the parking map (see Parking, below), which shows the location of the building relative to other buildings and the parking lots.

Floor layout of D buidling


Arrows indicate various exits around the outside of the building. Room numbers for first floor rooms which open onto hallways are also shown, for orientation inside the building. Restrooms are marked WRR and MRR, at top right and lower left on the first floor, but top right only on the third floor (as indicated by blue highlighting). To reach the third floor, take one of the three stairways (highlighted in yellow), or one of the two elevators (highlighted in red, with red dots indicating the hallways they open onto). The location of Room D326 is shown near top right, in the same position as D135 on the first floor, relative to the hallways, stairwells and elevators. Of the four doors leading into D326, only one is an entrance; the others have nonoperational handles, which display "Exit Only" signs; the entrance is shown by the blue dot in the hallway outside D326. When Professor Seligman gives planetarium open houses, there may be telescope open houses afterward (weather permitting). If so, you can reach the roof via a narrow stairwell opposite the north elevator (indicated by a blue dot next to the red dot for that elevator), or via the South elevator; however, South elevator access to the roof is only possible when a special key is inserted into the control panel, so if you need to reach the roof that way, Professor Seligman must escort you at the start of the observing session. If you can climb stairs, you can reach the roof at any time during the observing session, as the door to the stairwell is propped open throughout the session.

Building D from the northeast


At the left is a photo of the D building from the northeast, which shows the east entrance to the building.

Building D from the southeast


At the right is a photo of the D building from the southeast, which shows two of the south entrances.




The Long Beach Police Department patrols the campus regularly, and tickets all incorrectly parked cars. Street parking is severely restricted on most streets near campus, and is not a reasonable option for most people; but there is parking adjacent to Heartwell Park, on the southeast corner of Clark and Carson, if you don't mind a bit of a walk, and exercise caution in leaving your car.

Map of LAC parking lots


Metered parking (shown in the map at left as circled P's) is mostly limited to half an hour, which is too short a time for more than the briefest of visits to the planetarium; so most visitors should use the vending machines (shown as red triangles) to purchase one-day parking permits. Permit parking is allowed in most lots, but some are marked only for staff or administration, and all lots have some spaces marked for staff, carpool, or handicapped parking. Only individuals with handicapped placards or stickers can park in handicapped spaces, even with a permit; and the other specially marked spaces cannot be used at all, by one-day permit holders. (image from the LBCC LAC map)


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