Underground homes that provide shelter for apocalyptic scenarios — primarily a nuclear fallout — are now being built in Japan, with one non-profit organization spearheading the effort.
Why they’re doing it: Japan’s interest in fallout bunkers reportedly grew last year as its neighbor North Korea continued to refine its ballistic missiles and Russia threatened to use nuclear weapons against Ukraine. So far, neither situation appears to have an end in sight, with Pyongyang recently warning about a “war of revenge” against the U.S. and Moscow displaying signs of instability after an attempted insurrection.
On May 10, the organization opened a model nuclear shelter at its office in Tsukuba, Ibaraki Prefecture. Since then, it has hosted around 40 tours for politicians, government agencies, construction professionals and the media. While the facility is still closed to the public, the nonprofit has grown its membership to around 30 companies in just a year.
Features: The model bunker was reportedly built with specifications similar to those legally required in Switzerland. According to the organization, the 48-square-meter structure — with a living space of 25.6 square meters — can house four adults, three children and one pet for up to two weeks.
It features a blast-proof door with a thickness of 200 millimeters, an air filtration system and a portable toilet. It can withstand a bombing similar to Hiroshima and Nagasaki if it is constructed at least a kilometer from the center, the organization said.
Other models: Growth View Inc., a construction firm based in Hachinohe, Aomori prefecture, has also launched a model nuclear shelter. For 6.6 million yen (approximately $45,600), the 10-square-meter bunker comes with 80-millimeter-thick walls lined with lead panels to protect from radiation. It also features an electric source, an air conditioning and filtration system, emergency kits and external surveillance cameras. Supplies can help occupants survive for up to two weeks.