Minneapolis / Saint Paul / Twin Cities urban exploration


The Ford Motors Mining Tunnels are located way the hell beneath the Ford assembly plant in Saint Paul, which was built in 1925. The tunnels were mined for silica in the 1930's; the sand was hauled up to the the Ford Glass Plant, which turned it into glass for Ford automobiles. The Glass Plant was part of plant operations at the Saint Paul Ford plant through the 1920's and 1930's. When Ford quit making its glass on site at the plant, the Glass Plant and the mining tunnels were shut down.

The long-abandoned Ford tunnels are by far the most extensive mining tunnel system in the Twin Cities area. Making a great thing even better, they connect with both the guts of the active Ford Assembly Plant high above on the bluff, as well as with the Ford Hydro Plant on the dam.
The tunnel system is notoriously difficult to get into due to the security of the still active plant: Ford employs patrolling guards on foot and on wheels, as well as electronic surveillance cameras and other monitoring devices. One would-be adventurer we spoke with while researching the system was caught entering the tunnels solo by Ford security in the mid 1980s: they held him in a room, fed him doughnuts, and made him watch Ford promotional videos nonstop for six hours before letting him go.

Another would-be explorer we've heard about thought that he had been quite sneaky in his approach... but as soon as he got near a potential entrance, found Ford security waiting there for him, wanting to know just where he thought he was going. He was less lucky than the donut guy: the police were called and his ass was arrested on the spot. Action Squad is allergic to being arrested. We decided to try to avoid it.





TRIP LOG #2 & #3


2008 'Return to Ford'

Greg Brick is a Weiner

Sometime in the lawsuit-happy 1980's, Ford decided to totally seal off the old tunnel system before anyone with a litigious family got in and was hurt or killed. Since then, common wisdom among local tunnel rats had been that the Ford Tunnels were impossible to get into. In certain circles, the tunnel system achieved almost mythic status. Getting in was considered a pleasant but impossible dream.

Well, Action Squad wanted to get in ... and Goonies never say die. In the Autumn of 2000, Action Squad became the first group of adventurers in recent memory to make it past Ford's plant security and actually find a way into the Ford mining tunnels.

Damn fuckin right we're proud.

                                                        UNDERGROUND MISSIONS PAGE