Cold War-era missile silo in New Mexico turned into Airbnb

ROSWELL, NM (KRQE) – It’s a piece of Cold War history just east of Roswell and now a businessman wants to turn it into an attraction. This is something you won’t be able to spot very easily from the road. It is the Cold War-era missile silo that once housed an intercontinental ballistic missile as part of the Atlas F project from 1962.

More shockingly, there were once 12 of these missile silos surrounding Roswell when Walker Air Force Base once stood. Each silo cost $22 million to build and across the United States, 72 were built for this project.

“It contained an intercontinental ballistic missile with a 4-megaton warhead on it,” said Gary Baker, the current owner of two missile silos in Roswell. “It took barely two and a half years to build them and two years to operate them.”

In the 1990s, the missiles were salvaged and parts of the silo were used for other programs, essentially destroying all knowledge of the once ambitious project. Throughout Project Atlas F, four silos malfunctioned and were destroyed by the missiles they housed. Fortunately, no crew were injured or killed. Three of these explosions occurred in Roswell.

To put that into perspective, from the center of the silo where the missile and its elevator were housed to the center of the control room where the crew operated was 100 feet. What stood between the crew members and a possible fatal explosion was a few inches of steel and a few feet of concrete.

Buying two of the silos 25 years ago for $55,000 apiece, Baker turned one into his home. The others are still under renovation. He shares the story of these silos and how they impacted his life growing up in Roswell.

Baker played there in the 70s when he attended the New Mexico Military Institute. “Can you imagine playing in those things and then going a little deeper?”

Baker never thought of making it an Airbnb but wanted to share their story with everyone. His original plan was to make it a museum, but he opted for the bed and breakfast. The Airbnb has only been open for a year.

He enjoys telling the story of the site with everyone who comes and stays. “It has nothing to do with the money. It has nothing to do with the money, we love what we do.

You can spend the night in the silo by booking on the Airbnb website. Fees for the evening are between $400 and $500.

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