“The Diefenbunker was designated a National Historic Site in 1994 because it is a symbolic of the Cold War and the strategy of nuclear deterrence, a symbolic of Canada’s determination to survive as a nation following a nuclear war, a poignant and tangible reminder of what was one of the most critical periods in modern history.
The heritage value of the Diefenbunker National Historic Site of Canada lies in the comprehensive physical evidence it presents confirming Canada’s determination to survive and function as a nation during a nuclear attack as illustrated by its location, disguised setting, defensible design, and the heavily fortified construction. The Diefenbunker was Canada’s Central Emergency Government Headquarters during the Cold War. Designed 1957-59, it was built by the Government of Canada in 1959-61 to shelter key political and military personnel in the event of a nuclear attack. It functioned as the hub of a communications network and civil defence system from 1961-1994.”
Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Minutes, spring and fall 1994, May 1998.