Since Galileo saw the mountains on the moon in the seventeenth century, people went there.
When the Apollo missions realized this reality in 1969, the US space program began to predict an elaborate future on the moon. In 1984, NASA's symposium on this topic was convened after its organizers "understood the space transport technology in 2000, would be able to routinely carry loads on the moon" and felt they should start planning ahead.
Unfortunately, no nation on Earth owned a space transport technology capable of routing visits to the moon by the year 2000. In addition, we did not have much idea of the true nature of the Moon's surface.