Travels

Tashkent, impressions of a mestizo city

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Avenue in Tashkent

When a city is ravaged by an earthquake of 7.5 on the Richter scale that leaves 30 people homelessIt is easy to imagine that their oldest constructions, based on adobe, have been erased at a stroke.

In the days after the tragedy there is also the opportunity for a new renaissance for the city, the dream of any architect or urban planner.

But if the year is 1966 and we talk about the capital of the Socialist Republic of Uzbekistan under the control of Moscow, then the result is as ugly as expected. And it is that aesthetically the dictatorships only know how to generate horrible, monumental or monumentally horrible buildings.

According to the ideas of the USSR of the 60s, wide tree-lined avenues, plazas - ideal for parades of martial military and happy workers -, parks and many apartment buildings, each one more similar to its bland neighbor, who would not clash as Official Protection Homes in Spain at the same time or in an industrial Manchester.

Almost half a century after the catastrophe and its reconstruction, Tashkent has even more of a Soviet city than of a modern city, although he proudly treasures the distinction of own the only Metro service in all of Central Asia.

If we also add that tourists do not spend more than a couple of days in the city, as a must on flights from Europe before visiting the jewels of Samarkanda or Khiva, the superficial impression that one can communicate to friends and family when asked is reduced to one word: ugly.

Tashkent railway station

Buildings in Tashkent

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