Construction of the Tashkent metro: How it was…

Tashkent metro is called “Cool underground palace” and is rightfully considered as a landmark of Tashkent and entire country. The beauty and uniqueness of the Tashkent metro is already known far beyond the borders of Uzbekistan and there is no single foreign guest, who would not visit the beautiful underground arches.

In the distant 60s, it was difficult to imagine that a metro could appear in Tashkent. Tashkent has just begun to recover from a major earthquake. The city stood in the way of its formation, expanding and developing. According to forecasts, significant population growth was expected only by the 80s. However, already in the early 70s, new residential areas grew on the outskirts of Tashkent, were built new highways and as a result increased traffic flow.

Even then, it was obvious that an increase in vehicles would only lead to traffic jams, which could negatively affect the safety of movement on the streets. Unloading of highways could be guaranteed only by the construction of the subway. This was a very challenging task due to the active seismicity of the area, hot climate, and unreliable loess soil. However, the decision was made.

Everyone remembers how difficult the first meters of laying the tunnel were, the soil turned out to be too fluid, as a result of which the mechanical shield began to sink, falling below the designated level or another problem – paving the way under one of the largest city canals - Anhor. The speed of construction at the initial stage was several times lower than it had been planned. These are far from all the difficulties builders had to face.

Eventually, almost all residents of Tashkent city followed the news on metro construction, not missing a single message that came from the construction site, as well as together they rejoiced at even small achievements. The TV news and newspapers continuously reported on each running meter achieved. The construction of the metro has become not only a sign of improving the transport infrastructure of the city, but also a socially significant event for all residents of the country.

The first test drive was carried out slowly, as if to the touch. The first passengers were those, who paved the way and their joy knew no boundaries. It is said that they congratulated each other right on the train, with happy smiles on their tired faces, saying: “Now Tashkent has its own subway!” The opening took place on November 6, 1977, when the first line of the Tashkent metro was opened – “Chilanzar”, which consisted of 12 stations. So, the first metro in Central Asia opened its doors. In 1984, the “Uzbekistan line” was built (11 stations), and in 2001 the “Yunusabad line” with six more stations was laid.

Finally, today, three more metro lines are in the process of a large-scale construction, which will allow increasing passenger traffic up to 300,000 per day and significantly relieve traffic on the roads. This is a clear indicator of how convenient the transportation system of the city is becoming, which undoubtedly will positively affect development of the tourism potential of Uzbekistan.