September 13, 2008

Continental HQ Moves to Cold War Bunker

Continental Airlines Saturday was weathering Hurricane Ike by moving its downtown Houston command center to an underground bunker, company sources say.

The airline was continuing to operate its hubs in Newark and Cleveland from inside a huge Cold War-era nuclear fallout shelter located 50 miles north of Houston in Montgomery County, Texas, unnamed sources told the Houston Chronicle Saturday. Continental's hub at Houston's Bush International Airport was closed, hopefully to reopen Sunday.

The newspaper said the airline leased emergency space in the fortress-like shelter in 2006 after watching Hurricanes Katrina and Rita disrupt the Houston area. The facility has largely been used as a secure data storage facility in recent years.

The Chronicle said the shelter was built in 1961 near Conroe, Texas, by Taiwanese businessman Louis Kung, founder of Westland Oil Development Corp.