Raven Rock Underground Command Center (Site R)

An underground complex, built by the Department of Defense as an emergency shelter and electronic control center. Located underneath 650 acres in the hills near the Pennsylvania/Maryland border, Raven Rock, AKA "Site R", reportedly had a full-time staff of 350 for much of the Cold War. Officially now called the Alternate Joint Communications Center, the bunker went on-line in 1954. Representatives of all the military departments and the Joint Chiefs of Staff for the federal government were reportedly located here as a contingency against a wipeout of the command structure in the event of a nuclear war. The site has 700,000 square feet of interior space, and enough room for 3,000 people. A new tenant is the Defense Information Systems Agency, Western Hemisphere, which operates the communication and command center located in the bunker. It is still used as a Continuity of Government location, and Dick Cheney is said to have stayed here after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack. Site R was supported by nearby Fort Ritchie, MD, a 638 acre Army post, with over 2,000 employees. It is now administered out of Fort Detrick, MD.