Cold War Bunker Turned Mansion In Missouri Can Be Yours

The 1960s underground bunker has been fully renovated, allowing its owner to live out Armageddon in the lap of luxury.

byOliver Parken|
Composite image of the exterior and interior of a nuclear communications bunker
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If you've ever wanted to live the life of a Bond villain, or would prefer contributing to The War Zone's Friday Bunker Talk posts from within an actual underground bunker, now's your chance! A Cold War-era communications bunker has emerged for sale which, unlike many that periodically come onto the market, has been fully renovated with all the conveniences you'd expect in a modern home. 

Yes, this doomsday mansion is turn-key.  

The bunker in question dates back to the 1960s and is located near Polo, Missouri, which is less than forty minutes away from Kansas City. It is currently up for sale on various real estate brokerage sites, but appears to have originally been listed by the Kansas City-based realtor ReeceNichols.

Inside, it boasts a whopping 10,000 square feet of modernized, underground space, which has been fully upgraded for twenty-first-century living; alongside some crazy optional extras. What's more, the listing includes 10 acres of land above ground, affording whoever ends up purchasing it ample space to build around the bunker. It is also fully self-sufficient, featuring a "private water well, a new pump, and a substantial 10,000-gallon stainless steel water storage tank, all seamlessly connected to an Aquasana Water Filtration System," its Zillow listing notes. "The bunker is [also] equipped with an emergency escape hatch and a towering 177-f[oo]t communication tower."  

Drone's perspective of the lot and surrounding area. Zillow

The entire lot, inclusive of the bunker, land, and other additional structures, is listed at a cool $2 million. Previously, it was listed at $1.4 million as of January 1 this year — the reason for the sudden increase in price is unclear. While the precise homeowner history, as well as when renovation work inside first began, remains murky, it appears to have been listed for sale at various points over the past few years. At several points in time, it reportedly could have been yours for well under $1 million. 

Exterior view of bunker entrance. Zillow

Yet even $2 million is considerably less than the $4.5 million it cost to build in the 1960s, the various real estate listings note. Based on a separate eBay lot for the site, ostensibly posted by its current owner, the build was completed in 1964. Adjusted for inflation in 2024 dollars, that figure shakes out to over $40 million — and that's without the additional renovation work.

From the outside, you'd be forgiven for thinking that the bunker represents nothing more than a small utility building off its nearby road. Yet entering the premises reveals its true nature. Three flights of stairs descend to the entrance of the main underground living space. For those of you who are curious as to how secure its occupants would be in the event of a nuclear attack or another end-of-the-world type scenario, the Zillow listing describes the bunker as the "pinnacle of security and resilience," featuring "formidable 2.5-foot-thick concrete walls, additional layers of earth, EMP-resistant copper shielding, and two massive 3,000-pound blast doors."

While this would in no way save you from a direct nuclear strike from a thermonuclear warhead, it could prolong your survival from a nearby blast.

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"Inside, the bunker has been meticulously transformed into a relatively luxurious living space spanning two levels," its Zillow listing notes. "It boasts a modern kitchen, two bathrooms, a spacious living room, and adaptable bedroom arrangements," of which there are currently five. It also features a study/office space and a bar area.

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Beyond these standard living spaces, it is also kitted out with a number of additional recreation areas, based on the preferences of the current occupants. 

"Amenities such as a gym, a soundproof music studio with recording facilities, a theater room complete with a pool table, an expansive glass blowing studio, and a generous recreation area with soaring 16-foot high ceilings" are currently part of the bunker.

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If none of that interests you, the space provided could easily be re-configured for virtually any sort of recreational activity. The possibilities really are endless. 

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While details on the exact history of the bunker remain murky, it was most likely part of the AT&T L-Carrier Cable Network, designed to send telephone signals, and later television, coast-to-coast.

Ex-AT&T communication bunkers do end up for sale from time to time, and we profiled a bare-bones one listed for sale at $695,000, located outside Scott City, Kansas, in 2021. There are many similarities between the bunker near Polo and the one near Scott City — including their original cost to build (the Scott City bunker supposedly cost $4 million); blast doors; EMP shielding; 10,000-gallon water tanks; and 177-foot communication towers above ground. 

Inside the bunker near Scott City, Kansas. eBay/officefirstsolutions

As we noted in the aforementioned profile, the AT&T L-Carrier Cable Network was in the process of being upgraded in the early 1960s — which coincides with the likely construction of the Polo bunker. This was in order to "provide a hardened land line connection between critical military command installations that could survive an initial nuclear exchange."

The bunker lies right near Kansas City, which is where the network runs through as shown in the schematic above. via ColdWarComms.org

Those bunkers "were constructed with enough amenities to sustain support crews for two weeks [following a nuclear strike]... Every station offered nuclear early warning and blast detection systems. By the mid-1980s, the L-carrier lines were no longer needed, as faster forms of communication like fiber optic cable and satellites had made the coaxial copper cable that these stations carried from coast to coast obsolete," as we previously highlighted.  

If you're unable or unwilling to pay millions of dollars for the Polo bunker, and don't mind doing your own renovations, an 8,300 square-foot underground AT&T Communications Facility close to Paris, Missouri, is currently listed for sale at $430,000. You can explore that particular shelter, which is just under 150 miles away from the Polo bunker, here.

But whoever ends up buying the fully-renovated version of the communications bunker near Polo will have the opportunity to live a life of comfort and extreme security in a pretty unique setup from the get-go. 

Contact the author: oliver@thewarzone.com

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