Stalin's bunker

Stalins Bunker is an air raid shelter located near Samara State University of Culture in Samara, Russia. It is a subterranean bunker complex constructed between February and October 1942. It was the alternative Supreme High Command General Headquarters of the Soviet Armed Forces intended for Joseph Stalin during World War II. Stalins Bunker is located 37 metres beneath the Kuybyshev CPSU oblast Committee building, 100 metres south-east of the Samara Academy Theater. Stalins Bunker was declassified in 1990. Now the civil defence museum occupies the former air raid shelter. The air-raid shelters for the Soviet High Command were built also in Yaroslavl, Gorky, Kazan, Ulyanovsk, Saratov and Stalingrad.


1. History
During World War II, Kuybyshev was chosen to be the alternative capital of the Soviet Union should Moscow fall to the invading Germans. In October 1941, the Communist Party and governmental organizations, diplomatic missions of foreign countries, leading cultural establishments and their staff were evacuated to the city.
On 15 October 1941 the State Defense Committee produced a secret decision No 801 "On evacuation of the Soviet capital Moscow to Kuybyshev". Evacuation of Stalin was envisaged in case of emergency. 21 October 1941 the State Defense Committee produced a secret decision No 826 "On construction of the air raid shelter in Kuybyshev". The Stalins Bunker was designed by Chief Technology Officer Yulian Ostrovsky and main architect M. Zelenin. They copied construction of Aeroport Moscow Metro station. Subway tunnelers from Moscow and Donbass miners were deployed for the construction of the bunker works. 2900 workers and 800 engineers took part in the construction. Mine-surveying work was steered by I. Drobinin. All builders were under a lifelong gag order. Soil withdrawal was carried out at night. 25.000 cubic meters of soil was recovered in 8 months. 5.000 cubic meters of concrete have been used in the construction. The Stalins Bunker was put in the operation by government commission on 6th January 1943.
Joseph Stalins daughter Svetlana was sheltered in the bunker during the air strikes. If Stalin ever visited the bunker, it was not documented.

2. Description
Stalins bunker was designed to survive an explosion equivalent to 2.000 kilograms of TNT. Defensive measures include 23 meters of earthen cover, 4 meters of concrete, and a layer of sand for protection against enemy air raids. The bunker has a power station and a stand-alone system of air regeneration. There are workrooms on the 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th floors. After descending the stairs into the lower section and passing through the steel door, there is a long corridor. On the right side is Stalins accommodation. On the left side is a convention hall. Several floors up, theres a series of rooms which include a generator, ventilation equipment, accumulators, an elevator motor, pump rooms and the telephone switchboard.

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