From garden sheds to international banks, everyone wants to keep their valuables safe and secure – and for some buildings across the globe, the mind-boggling lengths of security they’ve gone to has made them world-famous.
In this article, we’ll take a whirlwind trip through some of the planet’s most impregnable locations – we’re betting even 007 couldn’t break into these.
Svalbard Global Seed Vault (Spitsbergen, Norway)
In the remote wastes of a Norwegian island is a striking building protruding from a mountain face, with tunnels running deep into the rock. This is the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, housing the planet’s biggest genebank of food crops, and designed to withstand any type of man-made or natural disaster. This is to provide the world with a reliable and safe source of valuable crop diversity that will ensure these plants’ survival, and the survival of those that rely on it. Thanks to its isolated and geologically-stable location, along with surrounding permafrost offering natural freezing ability, it’s in the perfect secure location to sustain cold conditions for the seeds, regardless of any disaster or power outage. Picture: source & license.
Bold Lane Car Park (Derby, UK)
When you think of high-security premises, you don’t normally think of a multi-storey car park in Derby. Yet the most surprising addition to our list is exactly that. Bold Lane Car Park introduced strict security measures in the 1990s to protect the premises against crime in the area, and as a result, inadvertently built a reputation as one of the most secure places on the planet. With individual barcodes for each parking bay, almost 200 CCTV cameras in operation, and the widespread use of sensors to check for both horizontal motion of cars and vertical motion of people, nothing gets missed in this ultra-secure facility. So, if you’re planning a shopping trip in Derby in the future, you know the perfect place to park up.
Fort Knox (Kentucky, USA)
The phrase it’s like Fort Knox has become synonymous with secure places – and for good reason. This impenetrable vault is also known as the United States Bullion Depository, and its reputation is world-renowned. Nobody has ever successfully broken into Fort Knox, testament to its top security measures – these include being built from concrete, steel and granite materials and the presence of a US Mint Police guard, minefields, fences, a visitor ban, and the fact that gold is rarely removed or brought into the facility.
Vatican Secret Archive (Vatican City)
Shrouded in secrecy, you’d be forgiven for thinking the Vatican Secret Archive was straight from the Da Vinci Code. The archive contains a vast array of religious and administrative documentation going back hundreds of years, including state papers, promulgated acts, accounts information, and historic church documents. The contents of the archive are owned by the Pope, and access was limited to the Catholic Church’s inner circle until the latter half of the 19th century when access was granted to researchers. Applying for access is still very strict and only a few photographs exist of this mysterious location. Picture: source & license.
Cheyenne Mountain Complex (Colorado, USA)
Stretching 60 metres below ground, the Cheyenne Mountain Complex is a hidden bunker labyrinth that used to serve as the base for NORAD (North American Defense Command) and the US Space Command. Since 2008, the facility has been used as an air force station. Underneath the mountain, the complex houses over fifteen 3-storey buildings, and hundreds of springs are incorporated into the structure to ensure the building can withstand earthquakes and other strong movements. This, along with steel-blast doors, mean the complex can remain fully operational even in the event of a thirty megaton nuclear blast.
If you’re searching for security solutions in South East England, the Fire Action team can help. Operating since 2005 as a specialist security and fire equipment provider, we know how to keep businesses out of harm’s way, thanks to our wide range of products, services and training courses.
Simply get in touch to discover how we can help your premises.