Military Wiki
Atomska Ratna Komanda (ARK)
Konjic, Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Type Cold War Nuclear bunker
Coordinates Latitude:
Built 1953[1]
Built by The government of Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
concrete and reinforced steel
In use 1953 – 1979
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Controlled by Bosnia and Herzegovina Army[2]

Atomska Ratna Komanda (Cyrillic: Атомска Ратна Команда) also known as the Ark, and popularly as Tito's bunker[3] is a Nuclear Command Bunker and military command center near Konjic[4] Bosnia and Herzegovina [5] built in case of an atomic disaster, it resembles a complicated labyrinth, with residential areas, conference rooms, offices, strategic planning rooms, and other functional areas.[5] Built for President Josip Broz Tito and 350 of his closest associates.[3] Until the collapse of the country in the early 1990's, the Bunker was top secret.[6]


Work began in 1953, as the Cold War was heating up, under the orders of President Tito by the Yugoslav People's Army (JNA). The construction and existence of this bunker was the most closely guarded military secret [7] and kept a state secret until the 1990s, when ARK was finally revealed.[5] In 1979, with work completed the facility was officially handed-over to a crew from JNA, consisting of 16 military personnel (By ethnicity: 9 Serbs, Bosniaks and 4 3 Croats)[6] to maintain it should its need arrive. After Tito's death in 1980, the complex was mothballed, but kept ready in case of war. During the backup of Yugoslavia the JNA ordered the demolition of the bunker, to deny it to the separatist Government of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In March 1992 the orders were given to destroy the fertility, however the soldiers refused to carry out their final orders and surrendered the complex to the Bosnia and Herzegovina government.


The ARK, built between built between 1953 and 1979 [3][5] is the largest nuclear shelter [4] and one of the largest underground facilities ever built in Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.[5] Located at a depth of 280 meters, built in the interior of the hill, at the foot of the mountain Zlatar [7]

The bunker was built with the intention that, in the case of (nuclear) war, functions as a center of military operations (shelter for the Supreme Command Staff) and shelter for President Tito, his family and close associates. This building, which resembles a maze, with more than a hundred rooms and fully preserved inventory (consisting of a number of residential space, conference room, offices and a "presidential bloc"). Occupying a space of 6.500m2 and consists of 12 connected blocks, it was designed with room to accommodate and protect 350 people [5] and provide a smooth life for six months.[3]

When viewed from outside the complex, Visitors are greeted by three simple houses, that were not marked on any map, surrounded by nature next to the Neretva River, however these houses, for nearly 50 years concealed the largest military facility, which was the third most important in the former Yugoslavia. The first underground Zeljava airport near Bihac, and the other the Naval port Lora in Split, Croatia.[3] It consists of three parts. The first is visible and is called "The Masking Part", which consists of three units: a control residence, the building of the cable securing communication with the then Yugoslav President Tito, and the facility where the technical support personnel should be located. When passing through the corridor of the first house, three heavy metal doors, with a thickness of 1.20 meters, open to a tunnel that takes you to the heart of atomic shelter at the depth of 280 meters and a length of 202 meters.[3]

The tunnels, lit by some 6,000 neon bulbs connect masking part of the third part of the building, the atomic shelter that can withstand a nuclear blast volume 20 kilotons. The third part of the building is shaped like a horseshoe and it is protected part because it contains protection systems, fire alarm system, a system for protection against nuclear air attack. It is divided into 12 blocks. The most important are blocks 6 (communication), 8 (Tito's bloc), 9 (lung object-air), 10 (fuel) and 11 (water). Bunker covers a total 6,854 m², has more than 100 dormitories with comfortable beds, two large conference rooms, five operational centers with direct phone links with the Presidency of the Federal Republic and cable TV, two kitchens, five large toilets, Crypto centre, and a fully equipped hospital operating room.

Within the building there is a larger number of rooms, for a total of 21 system maintenance.[3] It contains two containers with 50 tons of oil, two types of climate, a swimming pool with 170 cubic meters of water, running water, and technical from natural wells located in the mountains. Each system has an alternative in case the first fails. President Tito's residence in this building is equipped elite. It consists of five rooms: room for secretary and party leads in President Tito's office linked to the bedroom, and from it you enter the room first lady of Yugoslavia Jovanka Broz, while the last room to relax. The temperature in the bunker is between 21 and 23 degrees Celsius and humidity of 60% to 70%, which represents ideal conditions for life at a cost of $4.6 billion [3][7] equal $26 billion in today's currency.[8]

For over a decade after its completion in 1979 it held the highest national military secret of the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.[3] For this, in addition to all the workers who were carefully selected and vetted (signing a contract of silence), all staff member held the highest security clearance [3]


Today the facility is under the Authority of the Ministry of Defence of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and manage by Bosnia and Herzegovina Army, protected by a small detachment of five soldiers.[3] preserved intact with all its symbols and signs of our former social, economical, political and ideological system of the former Yugoslavia. With the wars of the 1990's Many monuments in former Yugoslavia, especially those in Bosnia and Herzegovina, were destroyed. ARK is therefore a unique exhibition space, in an nontraditional framework of art both from a psychological and intellectual point of view.[5]

Project Biennial of Contemporary Art, D-0 ARK[]

Tito's bunker is now a meeting place for artists from the region, Europe and the world. The intention of Biennial of Contemporary Art, D-0 ARK is to transform the Object ARK that is still under the Authority of the Ministry of Defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina, into a prestigious regional cultural institution that stays at the forefront in research and promotion of new artistic trends.[9] The importance of the project is to preserve and protect cultural heritage and historic building what was Tito’s Atomic shelter, as well as creating the artistic value in that venue and re-establishment of broken connections between artists and creative people in the region. Council of Europe has proclaimed the Project D-0 ARK Underground as a Cultural Event of Europe for year 2011. Project has strong UNESCO support.[5] The opening of the second cycle of the project Biennial of Contemporary Art D-0 ARK Underground take place on 26 April 2015, where 35 artists from 19 countries presented their exhibits.[10] Last year, from 27 May to 27 September held its first Biennial of Contemporary Art. Brought together 44 artists from 18 countries around the world, and there were more than 15,000 visitors.[3] Then he set 50 works of art that have become permanent setting this property. The financing of the project involved five countries: Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey. Second Biennial will be held on 26 April 2016.[3]

See also[]


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