Taft Tunnel

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Taft Tunnel is an escape tunnel from the Jefferson Memorial. The exit point is a sewer grate outside the Citadel entrance, just south of the west point of Arlington Memorial bridge. These tunnels were most likely used as a secret escape route for pre-War political figures occupying the Pentagon, but Chinese weaponry and items, including rifles, pistols and clothing, alongside a ham radio and other bits of technology, lend credence to it being occupied by Chinese spies.


The initial tunnel leads to an open room with many feral ghouls and some radioactive barrels. From there, you go down another tunnels which opens to a room with two doors. The one on the left has a very hard terminal that Dr. Li must hack to open the door in front. The door on the left is populated by Enclave soldiers. Once the front door is opened, there is another tunnel with door ways on the left that have nothing of value and a door on the right that you go through. Then there's another tunnel that leads down. From there, there's another door on the right that leads to a Brotherhood of Steel paladin using a flamer against feral ghouls. From there, you head to the right and up the ladder to the entrance of the Citadel.


In the lower levels, you will encounter a number of feral ghouls, while the floors above have many Enclave soldiers, and it was once occupied by Chinese spies.

Notable lootEdit

  • Eyebot helmet on a desk just after the second room you are ambushed by Enclave soldiers.


  • In the tunnels, Enclave soldiers will ambush you from apparently inaccessible catwalks. There are several means by which to reach these catwalks, which will allow you to loot the otherwise unreachable bodies, and kill the soldiers waiting at the second ambush point before they can see you. See the Discussion Page for details.
  • The tunnel can't be reached before the final steps of the quest The Waters of Life.
  • It seems the Jefferson Memorial access to the tunnel is no longer available if you have Broken Steel.
  • Attempting to use the Citadel access to reach the Jefferson Memorial does not work, as the path to the Jefferson Memorial entrance when entering from the Citadel end is blocked by a locked door that says it's activated elsewhere.
  • After the Waters of Life quest, you can get back in by going back inside, and picking the very hard lock on the metal door near the Brotherhood of Steel Knight. If you told Garza to stay, he will still be there.
  • During The Waters of Life when the player is escorting Madison Li and the others through the doorway leading up to the door that Madison must unlock, it is always a possibility that any one person (and perhaps others, including companions) can become sealed behind the doorway. This is not a bug as the door is scripted to close when the player reach's a set distance away, meaning if for any reason someone is hanging behind they will become trapped, unless Madison is trapped you can just leave them there, but to free them you must reload and make sure everyone comes through.


Taft Tunnel appears only in Fallout 3.

Behind the scenesEdit

The name of the Taft Tunnel is named after President William Howard Taft.


  • xbox360Icon xbox360 If Garza dies from one of the Enclave ambushes, Dr. Li will tell you that she cannot leave Garza behind. If you failed the option for Dr. Li to leave him behind then you will have to restart your game to an earlier save point. [verified]
  • pcIcon pc ps3Icon ps3 xbox360Icon xbox360 Sometimes when re-entering and exiting the taft tunnels after the Waters of Life quest, Dr. Li and her team of scientists may appear outside of the Citadel and next to the tunnel entrance. [verified]
  • xbox360Icon xbox360 When going through the door in the inaccessible area, Dr. Li, Daniel Agincourt and Alex Dargon may all appear in the second area of Taft Tunnels and act as if they were in the Citadel. [verified]
  • ps3Icon ps3 xbox360Icon xbox360 When approaching the sewer grate for the first time, you may be attacked by a super mutant. If you kill the super mutant with an energy weapon and it becomes an ash pile on top of the sewer grate, you will not be able to enter the taft tunnels. Your game will be corrupted and will have to reload from an earlier save point. [verified]
  • pcIcon pc If you successfully convince Dr. Li to abandon Garza and proceed to the next section, the remaining members of the science team can turn into Sergeant RL3 (who was waiting in my Megaton house) and the mission proceeds normally. [verified]
  • pcIcon pc ps3Icon ps3 xbox360Icon xbox360 Dogmeat (or other followers) may spawn inside the tunnels in a number of circumstances, regardless of earlier being told to wait, or return to their hiring location. [verified]
    • xbox360Icon xbox360 It may be that any NPC is able to spawn within the tunnels, but the previously mentioned followers have a higher chance. Enclave Eyebots have a chance to spawn within the tunnels, as well.
  • ps3Icon ps3 Should you happen to complete your journey through taft tunnel with all of the four followers from the quest The Waters of Life, without any of them turning into Dogmeat (or other standard followers), you might, after leaving the tunnel at the Citadel exit, get the message that Dogmeat is waiting for you in front of Vault 101, although you never told him to do so. [verified]
  • pcIcon pc Carrying out a sneak attack on an enemy, can result in someone from the team thinking you're being reckless and temporarily flee. While this has no specific negative effect, Dr. Li will remain crouching regardless of what stance you are in, but can be fixed by asking her to follow you again. [verified]
  • pcIcon pc xbox360Icon xbox360 If the player hacks the terminal before Dr. Li, or simply does not allow Dr. Li to hack the terminal, you may get a bug just outside the "catwalk room" where you fight off the Enclave while Dr. Li opens the door. After the threat is cleared and the door opened Alex and Daniel continue to wait endlessly on either side of the doorway. Dr. Li and Garza still follow the player normally. Alex and Daniel remain in the same place even if the player goes to a different area and returns. [verified]


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