CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- A historic launch pad at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station came crashing down in a controlled implosion on Thursday.  

  • Twin pads were in use for more than 50 years
  • Moon Express to take over area

Launch Complex 17 was set for demolition at 7 a.m.

Many gathered to watch the implosion of Launch Complex 17.

The twin pads, which were in use from 1957 until 2010, were seen standing moments before the implosion.

Its rich history includes the Explorer and Pioneer space probe launches. 

The commercial company Moon Express is taking over that area. The company plans to eventually launch smaller-scaled lunar lander missions.