The Tashkent Metro.

Here is some information about the Tashkent metro, a facility you cannot photograph because it is regarded as a military installation vulnerable to attack by terrorists:

The Tashkent Metro (Uzbek: Toshkent Metropoliteni) is the rapid transit system serving the city of Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan. It is one of only two subway systems currently operating in Central Asia, the other being the Almaty Metro in Kazakhstan. It was the seventh metro to be built in the former USSR and opened in 1977. Its stations are among the most ornate in the world. Unlike most of the ex-Soviet metros, the system is shallow (in this respect, it is similar to the one in Minsk).


The Tashkent Metro consists of three lines operating on 36.2 kms of route and serving 29 stations. In 2013, the metro carried 59.2 million passengers, which corresponds to a daily average of approximately 162,200.

Planning for the Tashkent Metro started in 1968, two years after a major earthquake struck the city. Construction on the first line began in 1972 and it opened on 6th November 1977 with nine stations. This line was extended in 1980 and the second line was added in 1984. The most recent line is the Yunusobod line, the first section of which opened in 2001. A northern extension of this line is currently under construction, and a fourth line was to start construction in 2010, but has been delayed.

The depth of the metro’s underground tunnels varies between 8 and 25 metres. The three lines are said to have been constructed to resist earthquakes of a magnitude of 9.0 on the Richter scale. The tracks have a 1,524 mm gauge and a third rail power supply (825 V DC). The average station distance is 1.4 kms.

The details of each line are as follows:

Chilonzor Line (red). Planning for this line started in 1968. It opened in 1977 between Sabir Rakhimov and Oktyabrinkilobi (Russian: Oktyabr’skoy Revolyutsii, now Amir Timur Khiyoboni) and includes Novza (Khamza) depot and one metro bridge over the Oqtepa Channel between Novza and Komsomolskaya stations. It was extended to Maksim Gorkiy (now Buyuk Ipak Yoli) in 1980 (including another metro bridge over the Salar River between Hamid Alimdzhan and Pushkin stations). It is 15.5 kms long with 12 stations – the planned eastward extension to Traktornyi Zavod (3 stations) was under way, but now has disappeared from maps.

Uzbekiston Line (blue). The route of this line crosses the city diagonally from northwest to southeast via the Toshkent Railway station. It opened in 1984 and expanded between 1984 and 1991. It is 14.3 kms long with 11 stations.

Yunusobod Line (green). Work is under way on this line to connect the northern districts to the airport in the south. The first 6.4 kms section with six stations opened for regular service on 24th October 2001 (test runs began on 28th August 2001, the 10th anniversary of independence, but opening was delayed due to the 9/11 attacks in the USA) between Ming Urik (initially planned to be named Lokhutiy) and Habib Abdullayev (initially planned to be named Shahriston).


Today, the Tashkent Metro has 29 stations that are all different from each other in appearance. The architecture and decoration of each station reflects its name. The peculiarity of the Tashkent Metro is its rather shallow station positioning. Some stations have escalators. 7 stations belong to the tower type, 4 stations to the arch type and one station (Mustakillik) to the tower-individual type. Prominent architects and artists of Uzbekistan took part in designing the stations. Interior decoration features solid and stable materials such as metal (which has been engraved), glass, plastic, granite, marble, smalt, ceramic tiles and alabaster (which has been carved). Every station is in effect an original work of art exploring a particular theme. Because the decoration reflects the time each station was conceived, some are very dated in their appearance (in some respects, the dated appearance of the stations enhances their eccentric appeal).

In 2013, there were 168 train cars operational on the metro and they served passengers in the form of 4-car train sets. The system’s station platforms are all 100 metres in length. Trains have an average speed of 46 kmph.


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