A Texas investor group is preparing for the worst.
The Trident Lakes community in Ector, about 60 miles north of Dallas, is planning for a doomsday scenario by building a $300 million luxury complex underground for those worried about a dirty bomb or other disaster-like scenarios.
"The initial perception is that it's defined as a doomsday scenario," said James O'Connor, CEO of Dallas-based Vintuary Holdings, which represents the collection of investors backing the project. "I'm trying to change the perception to a long-term sustainable community, with the concept of a 200-year community. We're not looking at just putting all our residents underground; we're looking to put together a beautiful place to live that's also secure."
Richie Witt, communications director for Trident Lakes, told CBS Dallas-Fort Worth that the community will be a five-star resort mixed with DEFCON1 preparations.
Texas won’t settle for just any underground bunker. The complex has to have the best.
We could use fancy words to describe what's going on. Or we could just show you our Master Plan. pic.twitter.com/XYesGI7V68— Trident Lakes (@TridentLakes) November 1, 2016
Some of the luxury amenities include: an 18-hole golf course, high-end spa, gun ranges, zip lines, shops and restaurants, and not just a single helipad but a row of them. But plans call for the 700-acre spread to also include an equestrian center, polo fields and 20-acre lakes with white-sand beaches. The entire compound will be wrapped by a 12-foot wall and have private security manning watchtowers. The project has received the necessary approvals, O'Connor said, and people are expected to take up residence in 2018.
About 400 condos are expected to be constructed with about 90 percent of the living space actually seated underground. Most of the homes will cost about $500,000 and each would be topped with a terrace overlooking one of the lakes.
CBS Dallas-Fort Worth reported that the first phase is invitiation only – mostly for celebrities and athletes alike. Phase two is for everyone else and a waitlist already includes 500 people from the U.S., Canada, England, Australia and New Zealand.
The community could have as many as 1,600 residents who, should disaster strike, can rely on water and energy production that's off the grid. O'Connor said designs and concepts may change as the project progresses, but a navigable tunnel network and an air-purification system are planned.
As is a DNA vault. The vault is an opportunity for "family sustainability," Witt said.
"You can take DNA and preserve it, where if something should happen, then technology down the road could take DNA and replicate a person," he said. "It's kind of science fictiony but it's also not that far in the future."
Whitt said Friday that Vintuary Holdings has purchased land in Ohio for a similar community and investors hope to expand the idea to other states. He didn't provide further details.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.