Here's the ultimate Pricechopper: marked down from $120,000,000 to only $1,250,000. The original owners (U.S. Air Force) moved out and took tons of equipment with them (including 3 ICBMs). A Cold War Titan Missile Base (one of only six built in the US) is for sale in Adams County, 90 miles west of Spokane. An estate must be settled and the property must be sold. They don't give the details like the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and square footage, but you know they had to include all the amenities for the Air Force officers who lived underground waiting for the call to launch. The good news, the Air Force doesn't need it anymore. The other good news, for less than the price of some Seattle condos, you can get an incredibly valuable and historic facility. (Let's not call it a home until after the remodel.)
The housing is probably in the Control Center, a three story hemispherical shell of hardened concrete where the bottom floor is about 8,000 square feet. Circles, cylinders, and domes are the norm because they were best at withstanding the pressures from near impacts. They were designed to guard against Soviet nukes, so they're probably also safe for asteroid impacts that aren't too close. There's also a powerhouse, because they had to produce their own; and a propellant terminal, so imagine how much diesel you can store for your generator, or how no one could top your wine cellar; an equipment terminal, for the ultimate shop, artist studio, or junk room; and even a pop-up antenna shaft, so maybe you can get that cell-phone signal repeater installed. Oh yes, and there are the missile silos, which will be good for … hanging laundry?
Outside you have a 360 degree view of a lot of empty land. People weren't eager to build near a silo that was effectively a bullseye. In an area slightly smaller than King County, there are only about 19,000 people, as compared to King's over 2 million. The neighbors won't be bothering you. There's nothing to block your view. The buildings are all below ground, with maybe some modern support shacks installed. The property is fenced with something far more effective than deer fencing. Finally, a garden that is truly safe. There aren't a lot of trees to get in the way, so bringing in your helicopter shouldn't be too hard.
Buy it and be prepared for the zombie apocalypse. Rent it out as a movie set, maybe even about a zombie apocalypse. Finally, a place to make as much noise as you want. Or, finally, a place that can be truly as quiet as a tomb. No windows to wash. Nobody cares if you mow the lawn. The roof won't leak, or it shouldn't. The insulation is the best possible. It won't get too hot or too cold, but you will have to bring it up past the 55 degree ground temperature. The typical home buyer's inspection may be a bit more involved.
After you're in there a few things to keep in mind. Don't lock yourself out. The doors weigh three tons and are meant to lock really well. Be very careful pushing any buttons, and there are undoubtedly lots of very retro buttons. Instead of steampunk is there such a thing as nuke-punk? Carry a flashlight or invest in very good emergency lighting because if the lights go out you'll be reduced to using your other senses, particularly touch. It's up to you, but if you find a red phone, leave it alone. If it rings, well, this is supposed to be an estate sale, but it is more like an estate sale for an era. Picking up that phone may send us all right back there.
· Titan I
· Titan Missile Base [TMB]
Written by Tom Trimbath