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Guide: New Georgia – Village of High Technologies

By Lizaveta Tatarnikova
artpart.org, 05 September '12


Five years ago, no one could even imagined that the popular "Istanbul-style" streets, "Italian" courtyards and ancient monasteries of Georgia, which are the must-visit places for every Christian, would have a competitor in the form of 21st century buildings. Two types of pilgrims visit the country: some want to worship Orthodox shrines, others - the fruit of a new "autocracy" - the current architecture, which was created by the state order.

Domestic political transformation, in which Georgia lives for the past few years, has touched external urban environment too: the wave of state-initiated changes moved the city into active construction. As a result of joint support from the government, various kinds of investments and inspiration of world architects, impressive number of construction sites have appeared, where government buildings are raising quickly, new police stations, customs terminals, projects of large hotel complexes.

Emergency Situations Control Centre
© D.GOGIASHVILI, Tbilisi
Modern Georgia is constructed from glass. They say that material was doubly successful: in addition to high technology, it blends harmoniously with the general line of the client architecture of the new wave, symbolizing the transparency of the state institutions.

The number of reactionary oppositionists to such buildings’ policy is not small, but even they note that craving for crystal purity in terms of construction has added a couple of highlights to the city.

Tourist road to Tbilisi usually begins with an introduction to the Peace Bridge, which was built two years ago by Italian architect Michele de Lucchi.

156-meter frame of wave-like structure is made of glass, shining in the sun, it didn’t just make the road to the local sightseeing shorter, but also gave birth to rather ironic imagination of local residents. At night the bridge is lit by 30,000 bulbs, designed by Frenchman Philippe Martineau.

House of Justice (3D)
© AG&P, Gori
Very soon, the not too harmonic pedestrian construction will be balanced by the House of Justice of Georgia, active construction of which must end on September 20.

Wave-like glass theme is seen in earlier constructed building of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia, behind glass walls of which one cannot hide corruption or "Klondike” solitaire games.

Another fresh architectural piece appeared in June at Lisi Lake by newly opened Emergency Situations Control Centre. Panacea from emergency - it really looks like a big tablet, though in the evening it reminds a flying saucer, which has parked on the shore.

House of Justice (under construction)
© M.FUKSAS, Tbilisi
It is just a couple of hours drive [from Tbilisi] to Kutaisi. New sight of the city is the business district, with the House of Government and Justice and the Parliament, construction of which entered its final stage. [Vladimir] Mayakovsky, who lived nearby this city in childhood, would have liked this "map of everyday life"!

By the way, in late September, the country will be supplemented with the new international airport, located in Kutaisi, but now construction site reminds a field of construction experiment. Opening is scheduled for September 23, the locals are assured: there should be no delay!

And this is just what I managed to catch in a short period of time; active construction is going on all over the country, but to describe the ins and outs "of the Village of High Technologies" – you need to stay there for a longer period of life.

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