Whittier, Alaska is a small town situated about 60 miles from Anchorage at the top of the Passage Canal. There are some pretty creepy stories about the state of Alaska but the town stands out for a number of reasons: its small size, its natural beauty, its remoteness and difficulty to access, and the fact that everyone in Whittier lives in one building. That's right; most of the 220 year-round residents live in Begich Towers, a condominium-like complex that not only houses about 80% of the town's residents, but most of the town's businesses and services as well. It is an entire community that lives under the same shared roof.
The area surrounding Whittier had never been a particularly populated place, so during the Second World War, the government thought it would make an ideal military base. Over the next few years, two of the town's only structures were built: the Buckner Building, which is now abandoned, and the Hodge Building, now known as Begich Towers. The military base became defunct in the 1960s and Whittier became a port for cruise ships.
Daily life in Whittier, Alaska, resembles life in other small American towns, but for the most part, living in a one-building community is a singular experience.
The Coronavirus Pandemic Closed The Town To Outside Visitors
Some Residents Haven't Left Begich Towers In Years
The City Is Only Accessible By Tunnel
If You Need To Enter Or Leave Whittier After Hours, You're Out Of Luck
The Top Two Floors Are A Bed And Breakfast
Most Of The City Services Are On The First Floor