posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 02:48 PM
I can say with 100% certainty that yes, at least 4 cities have underground tunnels interlocking many important buildings, and something approaching an
actual city beneath.
Tho two I have the least experience with are Fort Worth, TX and Washington, DC. The ones I have the most experience with are Austin, TX and Seattle,
In Fort Worth, the tunnels are not too impressive, being easily accessible from many points in the city, and convenience stores are located within.
Usually it's a way to just bypass traffic. There are, however, a large number of them going to federal buildings that require keycards to get in, and
have big men with guns on the inside. For obvious reasons, I did not enter those tunnels.
Washington D.C. has a huge network of tunnels connecting every capital hill building there is (and probably some there aren't). They are extremely
clean, nice smelling, and there's a private house/congress mini-rail that runs through many of the tunnels. I took a trip to DC when I was 17, and
lost my way on a field trip. Since I was in an expensive suit, and carrying a briefcase, and at the time (around 1993) no one was really thinking
terrorism at the white house, I was probably figured for an intern, or someone's son. I was able to ride the rail (for free) and even walked right
into one of the most classy elevators I've ever been in, right to a senator's lounge, where I noticed some pastries and had brunch with some old
men, having no idea who they were, or where I was. Eventually I wandered down a different flight of stairs, seeing a sign that said "Senators only
beyond this point".
Seattle, Washington has been destroyed about 2 or three times, through plague, fires, and earthquakes. At some point during the last century, there
was a problem with the plumbing so that sometimes, if the timing was just right, if enough people on Pill Hill or Queen Anne flushed their toilets at
the same time, excrement would literally shoot from the downtown toilets, sinks, wherever was connected to a sewer. To correct this, they buried
anywhere from 1/2 to 4 stories worth of buildings in filler soil, and built new roads on top of it. This is why so many buildings in seattle look like
they've sunk several feet into the ground. In fact, the ground has been raised above them. The tunnels are easily accessible, provided you can
remove the several-hundred pound grates covering them, and (in some cases) have spelunking equipment, as you could be looking at anywhere from a few
feet to fifty foot drop. There are tours that go to the "preserved" areas that look a lot like a certain underground fight from the movie
"Demolition Man", but those aren't any fun. Through some of them, bus lines cut through them. Some of the tunnels are forever flooded (with dirt or
water) and others are dry. Some of them are fun to explore, and some of them you should never set foot in (especially around the Seattle Light power
Austin's tunnels I'm most familiar with, and there are so many, and it extends in such a wide area, I'm not even certain where they begin and end.
The most easily accessible points are at the University of Texas, usually in the basement floors of the older campus buildings. Most of them are
padlocked shut, but for a punk-arse group of college kids looking for an adventure, that's practically a neon sign shouting "ENTER!!!" Anyway,
I've found multiple bomb shelters down there, one of which was unlocked and served, briefly, as a home during my homeless months. Briefly because the
biggest problem in these tunnels is the rats, who have completely infested the unused bomb shelters (which house nothing more interesting than old
school desks and very old stale tins of food). The tunnels extend at least as far as Riverside to the west, past 30 to the east, and well past the
state capital to the south. That's as far as I got around to exploring. At one point I thought I'd make a map, but eventually lost interest due to
more and more friends moving out of dorms, into apartments, and having a much more friendly place to party at. Most sections of tunnel were seperated
by nothing more than a chain-link fence (easily bendable or climbable). Good times...good times. Some areas had people living there. They extend so
far, and people go down there so rarely, that you could actually find "regulars" in some of the more remote areas. There weren't any green skinned
chupa-thingies, aliens, vampires, or feral two-headed mutants, just some very territorial homeless people trying to keep out of the way of others, and
the occasional group of LARPers. There may have been more interesting things out further, but like I said, I lost interest in exploring them at some