Yerevan Metro Overview
Opened on March 7, 1981, Yerevan's Metro is a clean, fast and easy way to get around. With only one main line in operation, and ten stops, you will be an expert after your first trip. Charbakh is the only station requiring a transfer, and it is unlikely you will need to go there. The trains come about every 5 minutes during rush hour, about every 10 during slow hours, and stop running at 11pm.
- Barekamutyun (Friendship) - this is the last stop to the north, and takes you to the "Komitas" neighborhood. The station is surrounded by a large underground shopping area that takes you in a circle allowing you to cross the large intersection from the underground.
- Marshal Baghramian - this station is in a park next to the Parliament, and across from the President's office and the AUA (American University of Armenia).
- Yeritasardakan (Youth) - located at the intersection of Isahakian and upper Abovian Steets, it is in a park close to popular Paplavok Cafe, with some underground shopping at the Abovian corner.
- Hanrapetutian Hraparak (Republic Square) - located next to Republic Square on Nalbandian Street, and steps away from the famous outdoor (weekend only) Vernisage Market. Across the street is the ArmeniaInformation (Tourist Information) Office and the Porsche dealership.
- Zoravor Andranik - this station is right next to "Kino Russia", a large movie theatre converted into a flea market. It is also next to the "St. Gregory the Illuminator" National Cathedral.
- Sasuntsi David - site of the famous statue of Sasuntsi David, Armenia's epic hero. The Yerevan Central Train Station is right above the metro stop, and is where you will catch a train to anywhere outside of Yerevan. Trains to Gyumri, Lake Sevan and Georgia are available, with lines to Turkey and Azerbaijan closed. Located in a big square with some good food shopping.
- Gortsaranain (Factory)
- Charbakh (change train at Shengavit)
- Garegin Njhdehi Hraparak (Garegin N'jhde Square)
Soviet Guidebook to Yerevan Metro
The following is the text of a tourist booklet that was published by the Soviets in the late 80's about the Yerevan Metro. The strange English used in this guide which had 30,000 copies published is quite entertaining, so I thought I would share it with you. I have not corrected or changed any of the typos, grammar, or British English. Neither have I updated any of the names... obviously there is no Lenin Station anymore, or Lenin Statue. Nothing that is speaks of being under construction has ever been completed as far as I know.
THE YEREVAN UNDERGROUND
If it is your first visit to the capital of the Soviet Armenia, your first problem Is going to be how to reach a place you need. The aim of this brochure is to help you in that matter.
Having looked it through a visitor of Yerevan will acquaint himself with places of interest, squares. museums and theatres of the city, and with all this the spirit of hospitality which is really sincere there.
There are many ways of getting about this city. There is a wide choice of tram, bus and trolley-bus routes in addition to taxi service. But the pride of Yerevan is the Metro, as the Underground is called here.
The date of birth of Metro in Yerevan is stated by March 7, 1981. That day in spring turned a jolly holiday for every citizen.
Of course, a long distance of time had passed since the moment in early 70-s, when due to the problem of shortage for transport means in a rapidly growing city, a problem which turned even more complicated, because of non-homogeneous geological relief, spread of different districts of the city and a great number of small crooked streets, difficult for a car to pass by, a solution for a new and more secure transport means was becoming rnore and more necessary.
A thorough technical analyses and detailed economical calculations, which had been carried in design and research institutions, throughout the country, guided by the State Planning Committee officials, brought up a decision for constructing in Yerevan a subway system--starting from Kievian street to to the Lenin Square.
The work on construction site started in 1972. During the first five years of boring work only a distance of 3,9 km for underground tunnels was passed. The tempo was too slow.
In 1977 the Communist Party's Central Committee together with the Ministry Counsel adopted a special decree entitled "Construction of Metro in Yerevan".
From that day on a new era in the history of city's underground started. The whole country participated in constructing Metro Yerevan. By that time, Armenia, the "country of mountains" had great traditions for tunnel construction. In spite of that, some highly qualified experts for boring, erection and furnishing works from Moscow, Leningrad, Tbilisi and Minsk were the first ones, who started the affair. Until now the metro-constructors in Yerevan will not forget "the great masters" A. Sukhanov, A Tukhamovich and others, who contributed sufficiently to the work.
The Metro stations with their vestibules organically combine national architectural traditions with modern shapes.
It is situated in the north of the city, in a square of the same name, and in the middle of the highly-populated city districts-Atchapniak and Nor-Arabkir. One can approach the station through numerous underground passages for each side of the square. A large originally decorated cafe, where you can be treated freshing drinks, sweets and ice-cream at any time during the day, and surely by a cup of coffee prepared in Oriental style, is situated at the ground floor of the square. Some small boutiques and booths neighbouring the cafe are always full of people. The escalator takes you down ‘to a huge underground hall, walls covered with white marble, and in one of them a bas-relief, commemorating friendship of Armenian and Russian people.
Then the blue train arrives. You can take a place into a comfortable, neat van, and, as it moves on, a pleasant female voice can be heard from the loud--speakers...
Our next station is "Marshal Baghramian".
It is the least overcrowded among the stations. But leaving it into a fresh air there are things to see. There goes one of the main avenues of Yerevan--Marshal Baghramian. Two underground passages from the station lead to the avenue and to a small garden.
On the opposite the imposing Supreme Soviet's building, Academy of Sciences, House of Communist Party's Central Committee. A little further--Union of Writers. House of Technics, other administrative buildings, Khachaturian's memorial house, cafes, numerous shops and pavilions. Next to Metro station there is a milk-bar "Katnatun" with a great choice for national dishes and drinks.
This station gathers the highest number of passengers, for it lies in the vicinity of educational centre of the city. On leaving the underground one sees a monument to the great Armenian poet A. Isaakian and not far-away another sculpture--two plaited hands cut of white marble. The sculpture is a present by the town of Carrara, Italy, to its sister--city Yerevan.
At the nearside there is the Public Library, named after Lenin's companion A. Miasnikian, then Youth Palace. educational institutes--Politechnical, Medical, Economical, Zoological--veterinary, state university, technical colleges, the only in the country ancient manuscripts store-house-Matenadaran, Ballet and Opera Theatre, Big Concert Hall named after A. Khachaturian, and then memorial-houses of Tumanian, Theatre of Drama, cinemas, Kotchar's studio-museum, the House of Chamber Musc named after Komitas.
The station Yeritassardakan is on the crossroad of the Circular Boulevard and several streets. Both the underground hall and the entrance hall are marked with interesting architectural solutions.
An underground commercial centre is located here (with a total area 400 sqm.) with cafes, booking--offices, trunk--lines. Not far from the station there is a book-shop, beauty--parlor, musical and photo shops. One can find there the famous Children's Art Gallery and Puppet Theatre, as well as hotel "Ani". There is a lot of things there which attract attention, and if, after all, you feel a little tired, have a rest and take a snack in any of the tiny cafes.
Station Lenin Square
The station hall is strongly illuminated and marked with interesting architectural findings.
The construction all covered with pink touf is domelike with various arches and vaults. A powerfull fountain in the middle of the hall makes its impetuous way up through ceiling aperture. The water is cool here and in hottest summer it tastes like an ice. A cosy cafe is secluded in the hooks of the arches and galleries where one is treated with ice-cream, candies, coffee. Underground passages from there lead to Nalbandian Street, Main Boulevard and Lenin Square.
A huge multitonn bassalt block with a cuneiform inscription wedged on it, running "King Argishti founded Yerevan in 782 B. C.--is the eye witness of the citys birthday date.
Lenin Square is the heart of Armenia and its capital Yerevan. A unique architectural ensemble and there are more than enough enthusiastic comments from the city's guests, describing the Lenin Square. Here is one. It belongs to the famous American painter Rockwell Kent who on visiting said: "Magnificent. I haven't seen in any country of the world a square like this". There we find the Governments House. designed by A. Tamanian in the spirit of national architectural traditions. Neighbouring it is the building of Central Post-office, trade-unions house, hotels "Armenia" and "Erebuni", Historical and Rзvolution museums, the Art Gallery of Armenia, which is one of the Soviet Union's richest museums. Exhibits numbering wore than 19.000 include works by Russian, Armenian and Western European artists. The monument to Vladimir Lenin considered as one of the best in the country appears in the centre of the Square, linking all parts of the encemble into a single complex. In tradition the area fulfils its role as a place for ceremony actions like military parades and demonstrations. Not far from the square one finds several hotels "Armenia", "Erebuni", "Shirak", a little further situated on Abovian street is the hotel "Yerevan".
Lenin Square with adjusting streets and parks are the "Tourist centre" of the city. And of course, for art admirers there is the Art Gallery.
In a hot summer day there is nothing like to find a shelter near the "singing" fountains or shadow in the nearby park with its 2770 small fountains symbolizing the age of the city thereby.
Here is situated also the book-shop in Yerevan with a large choice of belles-letters, commercial, technical, scientific books in Armenian, English, German and Spanish. Some hundred metres away is department store "Children's World", other shops of clothing, foot-wear, sportiitg goods, Here are also numerous canteens. cafes, souvenire boutiques.
It is the latest built station. lt was constructed in 1987. The station is situated in a highly populated district of Yerevan, with its urban--life tempo. One of the biggest cinemas in the city "Rossia" is located here with a cafe "Russ" on the ground floor. On the ground floor of the building opposite a booking office for advance ticket sale to trains and planes. A monument erected to a Russian writer Griboedov, stands in a park nearby. Not far from it there is another bronze-casted monument, dedicated to the leader of liberation movement in Armenia in the V-century Vardan Mamikonian.
One of the city's markets plenty of fruits and vegetables in all seasons is also there,
Some distance away are the Communist Party's Publishing House, Central Circus, shops of ready-made clothing, souvenirs general store, bookshops and Academic Theatre named after Sundukian.
Station David Sasuntsi
Its one of two ground stations of the Yerevan Metro. The moving staircase descends you into a wonderful entrance hall, decorated with bas-reliefs, subjecting ancient Armenian heroic epic "David Sasuntsi". Through the underground passages under the railway platform, one can approach the railway station of the city with a square adjoining it. In the middle of the square there stands a grand monument to the hero of the epic David Sasuntsi (author--E. Kotchar). The building of the railway--station is the visit-card of the whole ensemble. For a tourist who is on visit to Yerevan there is always a chance to get photoed at the monument.
Nowadays, the square is turned into a large construction site: a cornfortable hotel with capacity of 500 living rooms is in the stage of finishing and its going to be one of the main elements of the whole ensemble of buildings situated in the square. To the left from the square goes the Hoktemberian Avenue, linking it with Lenin Square, to the right--Bakvi street, leading to an ancient fortress--Erebuni.
The second ground station, located in one of the industrial districts of the city. Around it are situated plant for car tires, a cable plant, a chemical and shoe-producing factories and some others. The name of the station is very much symbolic (it translates as factorial), A little away from the station there stands a bronze monument symbolizing the Man of Labour. Only few minutes is enough to reach from here the second "airgates| of Yerevan--airport Erebuni.
This is an underground station. The only one which is built by an open method. The aim of that station is to reduce the stream of passengers on the way to the station "Spandarian Square" which is the last in the list of Yerevan Metro.
Station Spandarian Square
This station is situated in the centre of the biggest industrial district of Yerevan. A little away from the station there on a vast area extend the buildings of the plant of electrical machines. It is often called "a city in the city".
The station appeared in a result of hard and thorough work. Today the square is being reconstructed for modification. It resembles a three-storied architectural construction, Metro station occupying the ground floor. The first floor is six meters below the site's surface. Under a huge roof of elliptic shape one can find a cinema, cafes, boutiques, musical saloon and an exhibition hall. Different fountains make the climate here cool arid fresh. There are seven underground passages leading to a square, which links six highways of the city.
It is an interesting district to have a walk and nearby lies the picturesque Yerevan lake, where one can hire a boat to have a trip over it, can visit a restaurant hanging over the lake or admire 40-meters high fountain gushing out from the lake.
So, that's the end of the trip by Yerevan Metro with total distance of about 12 km.
Comparison shows that versus 14 million passengers were transported by Metro by 1981, in 1987 the figure reached 31 million which makes 9% from the total number of passengers for all transport devices. The figure, surely, is not too high. But it goes up and up with every year on.
A new branch of Metro is being constructed. It crosses the Hrazdan river and goes to highly populated districts Atchapniak arid Norashen including one of the city's biggest parks Tsitsernakaberd, Sporting-Musical Complex and Central Stadium Hrazdan.
The scheme, attached to this guide-book shows the outlooks of Yerevan Metro.
And, no doubt, the future for it is really promising.
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