FANNIN COUNTY (CBS11) – Sixty miles north of Dallas, far away from the constant roar of traffic, there’s something going up in rural Fannin County that’s generating buzz.
That buzz is not just among the residents in the nearby tiny town of Ector, Texas, but developers said it’s also among those who live as far away as Europe, even Australia.
Richie Whitt, communications director for the community said, “It’s going to be one of America’s most fun, most plush, and also one of its safest neighborhoods. It’s going to be a five star resort with DEFCON 1 preparedness.”
The 50 foot, solid marble statue and fountain, costing $3.4 million being built just off Highway 56 offers a peek of what’s to come where developers lure potential residents who may have a bunker mentality and are preparing for doomsday, yet still enjoy the lap of luxury.
“It’ll be one of the largest fountains in the world, it’ll be bigger square footage than the Bellagio (casino) fountains in Las Vegas,” said Whitt.
Amenities in the $300 million development include a golf course, equestrian center, spa, gun ranges, stores, and restaurants.
There will also be a row of helipads.
When asked if it’s a resort or a bunker, Whitt laughed, “Yes. We hope we never have to use the bunker part of it.”
In a hilltop prairie, underground, earth-covered condos will be built with above-ground terraces overlooking lagoons and white sand beaches.
Whitt said as many as 1,600 people will live there.
Planners said the underground luxury condominiums will be connected by a series of tunnels that will lead to a larger gathering space.
Aside from food, developers said the community will feature off-the-grid sources of energy and water, so people can live safely underground.
“You lower the air-blast lock doors and you’re safe from the dangers,” said Whitt.
Developers said a 12 foot wall will be built around the community that will feature watchtowers, a DNA vault, and an air purification system.
The Fannin County Commissioners Court Judge Creta Carter said he met with developers earlier this year.
Carter said the county’s only oversight of the project will be to make sure the septic system is up to code and to make sure the platting of the development is proper.
There is no zoning in the county, and state law limits small counties ability to regulate developments.
Whitt said starting prices may be $500,000.
The first phase is invitation only — mostly for athletes and celebrities.
Phase two is for everyone else, and there’s already a waiting list of 500 people from across the country, Canada, England, Australia, and New Zealand.
The first residents may move in as early as the first quarter of 2018, even though the entire development won’t be completed by then.
Whitt said investors have already purchased property in an undisclosed location in Ohio, where they hope to build a similar community to Trident Lakes.
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