Entire city lives inside a 14-storey tower block complete with its own church

While high-rise flats housing hundreds of people is pretty normal for most big urban cities, one isolated part of Alaska is taking that idea to ridiculous levels.

Surrounded by glaciers and snowy mountains lies the remote city of Whittier, which has been dubbed 'the weirdest city in Alaska'.

While not all of Whittier's 272 residents would agree with that description, it's certainly unique. That's because every single person who calls Whittier home lives inside a single building.

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The 14-storey block also has all the facilities you'd need including a church, post office, market, clinic, police station, and video store, all under one roof.

The building, Begich Towers, formerly known as Hodge Towers is also connected to a school through a tunnel carved into the side of a mountain.

“People think it’s weird,” Dave Dickerson and his wife Anna told CBS Sunday Morning.

“If I had one word, I would say it’s magical,” Anna added.

Whittier was originally developed by the US Army and was used as a military harbour and logistics base during World War II.

Begich Towers, however, was completed in 1957 after three years of work and has 150 two, and three-bedroom apartments. It was designed to serve as the headquarters of the US Army Corps of Engineers, reports Far Out magazine.

“I think what people don’t realise is that it’s just like an apartment building,” teacher Erika Thompson told the publication.

“Or it’s just like a high-rise condo in a large city. So, for me, it’s not that strange. That’s where I grew up—I grew up in a big city where everybody lived in an apartment building… but not the entire town.”

Erika taught the same group of children for four years and added: "It's like a family. I don't have discipline issues because they know me. It's like coming to school with mum, they call mum half the time anyway.

"In my first year, I had such a hard time separating that I was a teacher and knowing what was happening in some students' lives but no matter what time of the day or night, if a student knocks at my door, I will always answer it."

Today, the city is said to be a popular launch point for cruises, halibut charters, sea kayaking and the Alaska State Ferry.

It is also the gateway to Prince William Sound, a popular Glacier Cruise that takes you around America's largest intact marine ecosystem.

Whittier is accessible although it is quite remote as there’s one way in and out of the city.

To go to the city by car, you have to drive through a two-mile tunnel under a mountain which closes at night. You can also access the city by train.

While some people may think this is quite strange, residents told CBS Sunday Morning that it's a beautiful place that people should judge only after visiting.

Over the years, the residents have built up their own community which some people may not be accustomed to but those that live there say they have everything that they need.

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