The beautiful silk road city of Samarkand has opened a new airport terminal on March 18 th , and it definitely is a unique building. Samarkand is in the Central Asian republic of Uzbekistan. The new terminal at Samarkand International Airport is shaped like a giant open book. The terminal reportedly cost USD 80 million to build.
The book itself is meant to be a manuscript written by the former ruler of Samarkand and famous astronomer Mirzo Ulugbek, however it’s difficult to tell whether it’s particularly different from any other book.
Normally we expect these types of constructions to come from neighbouring Turkmenistan, whose airport is famously shaped like a giant eagle. Not to mention the many other buildings shaped like things – a star, a horse, a couple of books, a tooth, a globe, just to name a few. However, this is a new step forward for Uzbekistan and one we greatly welcome. Firstly, because we love buildings shaped like things, but also because the new facilities will also make travelling in Uzbekistan a lot more fun and enjoyable.
The new airport will be able to accommodate up to 120 flights per week instead of the current 40 flights. Uzbekistan Airports, the company who operates Samarkand International Airport, plans to increase from 5 destinations to 30 destinations by 2030, and from the current 480,000 passengers per year to 2 million passengers per year.
Samarkand, which is home to the Registan and other famous Silk Road sites is probably the most famous and most widely visited city in Uzbekistan so it’s fitting that it is the first to get a major renovation, however we hope it doesn’t stop here and that Bukhara and then Urgench (Khiva) also get new airports with unique interesting designs.
For those who have read this far, the heading was definitely meant to be a pun!