Denver International Airport has attracted a plethora of creepy conspiracy theories, despite being a relatively new airport.
Having opened in 1995, the airport is twice the size of Manhattan and was $2 billion over budget. From secret underground tunnels to a cursed horse statue and murals that depict the apocalypse, it’s easy to see why people consider DIA to be among the world’s spookiest airports.
The airport’s own CEO is even in on it, and welcomes it as good publicity. “[Kim Day] really embraces the conspiracy ideas,” Heath Montgomery, a DIA senior public information officer, told the Denver Post. “We decided a few years ago that rather than fight all of this and try and convince everybody there’s nothing really going on, let’s have some fun with it.”
Here are 5 reasons why people are creeped out by Denver International Airport:
1. The giant blue mustang statue at the gates of the airport killed its creator
Nicknamed ‘Blucifer’ by the locals for its glowing red eyes, the 32-foot-tall, four-and-a-half-ton statue is the first thing visitors see upon driving up to DIA.
‘Blue Mustang’ was commissioned in 1993, but wasn’t installed until 2008. Artist Luis Jimenez spent nearly 13 years working on the sculpture until 2006, when an enormous piece (some say its head) fell on Jimenez and severed one of his arteries.
After his death, the statue was completed by the his staff, sons, other professional artists. DIA commissioned the statue as a symbol of the wild west, but what they got was a veiny horse in a permanent fighting stance with neon red eyes that seem to glow like two burning coals at night. Those who know the history behind the statue are unable to look at it without being reminded of Jimenez’s tragic death.
2. A sealed time capsule contains a plaque that some think points to a New World Order
A dedication plaque at the airport’s south entrance is embedded with a Freemasons symbol and contains a time capsule. The capsule, which is set to be opened in 2094, supposedly contains artifacts relevant to Denver culture. Some consider the Freemasons symbol to be a little suspect, as the organization has been subject to its own conspiracy theories for a number of years. “We do have two Masonic symbols on here because the Masons actually made this for us,” said media relations chief Heath Montgomery. “It’s not uncommon to have the Masons to be a part of large public facility openings, like an airport.”
Underneath the symbol, however, is the inscription, “New World Airport Commission.”According to the DIA’s website, no such group exists. This has lead to the popular theory that the airport itself was built by the New World Order. The NWO is an alleged group of global elites that are plotting to take over the world, not unlike the Illuminati. Conspiracy theorists believe the airport’s multi-billion dollar cost was due in part to the construction of a headquarters for the group. The airport being a front for secret societies would explain away the weird vibes, art, and other rumors that plague the facility.
3. Gargoyles loom over baggage claim
“Notre Denver” (by artist Terry Allen) features two bronze gargoyles, perched inside suitcases, that loom over the east and west baggage claim areas.According to the description on the DIA website: “Historically, gargoyles were placed on buildings to protect the site. Denver International Airport’s gargoyles sit slightly above travelers’ heads to help ensure the safe arrival of baggage.”
While some believe gargoyles are symbols of evil, others believe their strange or scary faces are meant to ward off evil spirits.
In 2019, as part of the campaign to embrace their strange reputation, DIA installed an interactive, animatronic Gargoyle that guests can chat with in real time.
4. There’s a giant mural with disturbing imagery of dead children
According to Uncover Colorado, it’s believed by some that Leo Tanguma’s “Children of the World Dream of Peace” and “In Peace and Harmony with Nature” depicts genocide, and predict the end of the world.
In one section of “Children of the World Dream of Peace,” some believe the ghost or alien-like soldier represents a Nazi wearing a gas mask. Others believe the letter in from a child who died at Auschwitz, according to Thrillist. The soldier also appears to be stabbing the Christian dove of peace.
In the second mural “In Peace and Harmony with Nature,” sad children hold animals while others lie in coffins.
Though Denver Public Art describes “Children of the World Dream of Peace” as a “powerful mural expressing the artist’s desire to abolish violence in society,” some have theorized that it depicts the end of society as we know it.
5. There are tunnels underneath the airport that some think lead to underground bunkers
There is, in fact, a labyrinth of tunnels underneath the Denver International Airport. Some people believe that these tunnels lead to underground bunkers where the NWO or Illuminati will take shelter during the apocalypse (the same apocalypse that was predicted Tanguma’s wall art). Conspiracy theorists point to the airport’s multi-billion dollar budget as evidence of the bunkers.According to SimpleFlying, others have theorized that aliens and ‘lizard people’ are hiding in the tunnels, with these theories being ‘backed’ by questionable, blurry footage on conspiracy sites.
A tour of the tunnels has been in the works for some time in order to show guests and journalists that the only thing down there is baggage.
Other theories include an underground runway and several incorrectly constructed buildings that were left hidden in the dirt.
credit: Lauren Milici from Independent