Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Children's TLC Groundhog Run 1-27-08

SubTropolis is a 55,000,000 square foot, 1,100-acre manmade cave in the bluffs above the Missouri River in Kansas City, Missouri, that is claimed to be the world's largest underground storage facility. The mine naturally maintains temperatures between 65 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit year-round, which made it a great place to do a 5k run in the middle of a freezing cold Kansas City winter! My Mom, Jacob and I probably ran about 3/4 of the distance and walked the rest. It was lots of fun and we definitely plan on doing it again next year.

I found this whole SubTropolis thing pretty fascinating so in case you do too, here are some other interesting facts about it:

  • The complex contains almost seven miles (11 km) of illuminated, paved roads and several miles of railroad track.

  • Currently 5,000,000 square feet is occupied and 10,000,000 square feet are "improved."

  • About 3.2 acres of available space are added each year as active mining continues.

  • The United States Postal Service leases space in SubTropolis for its collectible stamp operations.

  • SubTropolis is at places 160 feet beneath the surface. It has a grid of 16 ft high, 40 ft wide tunnels separated by 25 ft square limestone columns. (The limestone columns are all over the place and make it feel like you're lost in a huge maze, except for the signs that are posted everywhere).

Sorry if that was way more information than you wanted, but it really intrigues me (and makes me feel a little bit claustrophobic!).