America's Next Subway System Won't Carry Passengers
"The Air Force wants to upgrade its aging nuclear missiles and the hundreds of underground silos that hold them," says Beckhusen. "One idea it’s exploring: the construction of a sprawling network of underground subway tunnels to shuttle the missiles around like a mobile doomsday train. As one does."
"As first reported by Inside Defense, the Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center will award several study contracts next month worth up to $3 million each to research the idea. A broad agency announcement from the Air Force describes the hair-raising concept, intended to keep the weapons secure through 2075, as a system of tunnels where nuclear missiles are shuttled around on rails or some undefined 'trackless' system."
"The project would likely be gigantic, expensive and take decades to build — all things that cut against cut against these relatively lean times at the Pentagon," cautions Beckhusen. But other options for replacing the U.S.’ silo-launched nuclear arsenal of 420 Minuteman III ballistic missiles seem equally costly and complex.