This mile-long stretch is expected cost $268 million dollars and provide a unique experience for tourists interested in history and seeing the hidden side of historic London.
The tunnels, which were once protected by the UK’s Official Secrets Act, are awaiting approval for plans to begin renovation later this fall.
The Kingsway Exchange Tunnels were built in the 1940s to shield and shelter London residents from World War II bombings. Since then, they have been closed to the public as they were used for Britain’s top-secret special operatives.
Transition of purpose through time
This space eventually became the Kingsway Telephone Exchange, becoming the home to a central point enabling communication between the United States and the USSR. This would employ at least 200 workers on phone lines. In the 1980s, it became the world’s deepest licensed bar – only for use by government staff, according to a CNN report.
The proposed plan expects to invest $170.5 million into restoration, and another $97 million to help it become a tourist attraction.
This new exhibit is expected to give the Churchill War Rooms – located only 12 feet underground and a small percentage of the length – a run for its money as London’s top permanent underground tourist attraction.
The project is expected to be open to the public in 2027.