There was a fake neighbourhood built on top of Boeing factory that no one knew and it looked super realistic!

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During World War II, one B-17 Bomber cost over $200,000 to produce, the equivalent to $3-$4 million in today’s economy. Since the United States ordered thousands of these Bombers, every measure was taken to protect the Boeing factory that produced them, including hiring Hollywood set designer, John Stewart Detlie to build a fake neighbourhood on top of the factory and several actors to inhabit the fake residences.

The fake neighbourhood was built in 1944 to protect the factory from any potential air strikes. It was removed a year after the war ended. Using the same techniques to set up a movie set, Detlie had designed and constructed streets, sidewalks, trees, fences, cars and houses which were all fake to fool the attackers.

At first glance, it looks like a typical day at a small village with several people enjoying the sun 

The truth is, there was a big military secret – a Boeing factory – underneath the ‘peaceful town’

During World War II, the U.S. Army built the fake neighbourhood to conceal the Boeing factory from the attackers’ sights

On top of the factory, the trees and structures are built shorter than a person

The trees are made of wires of chicken feathers

Fake street signs are also erected to give a more realistic look to the fake neighbourhood

Suzette Lamoureaux and Vern Manion examine one of the miniature bungalows in the “Boeing Wonderland”

Structures that look like cars if seen from overhead are parked along the street

An aerial view of the camouflage on top of Boeing Plant 2 shows that the fake streets of the neighbourhood were aligned with the real streets of nearby residential neighbourhoods

Joyce Howe, and behind her Susan Heidreich, walking over the camouflaged Boeing Plant 2

Aerial photo of the factory which was taken in either 1944 or 1945 was taken around 5,000 feet

Thousands of Boeing workers gather in front of Boeing Plant 2 for ceremonies of the changeover from B-17 to B-29 production on April 10, 1945

The first B-52A is rolled out at Boeing’s Seattle plant on March 18, 1954. In order to clear the hangar doorway, the plane’s 48-foot-high tail had to be folded down

The 5,000th celebration at Boeing Plant 2

B-17G Flying Fortress cockpits under construction

This is how it looks like in the factory back in wartime

How Boeing Plant 2 looks like now

Watch the video below to see how they built the fake neigbourhood to look like a realistic neighbourhood

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