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Gyumri Railway Station: A Bright Example of Soviet Modernist Architecture

Explore Gyumri Railway Station, Armenia's oldest rail station, known for its Soviet modernist architecture. Established in 1897, it connects Gyumri to major destinations. The station features unique design elements and serves as a historical landmark, reflecting the city's vibrant cultural heritage.

Gyumri railway station is the oldest in Armenia and the main station of the city of Gyumri. Established in 1897, the first train arrived from Tbilisi to Alexandropol (now Gyumri) on February 7, 1899, at 12:00 PM, connecting the largest city of the Yerevan province to the broader world. On that day, the Tbilisi-Alexandropol railway was inaugurated. By July 21 of the same year, the railway extended to Kars, and on December 6, 1902, it reached Yerevan station. Constructing the railway to Alexandropol was an ambitious project, given the challenging terrain. Emperor Nicholas II allocated 320 million rubles for the railway's construction, a substantial sum at that time.

 


The facade of the building is decorated with a huge bas-relief


The railway spans over 250 kilometers and was constructed in a remarkably short period, with construction beginning in 1896 and concluding in 1899.

The current station building was constructed between 1974 and 1979, designed by Rafik Yeghoyan. The large chandelier in the middle of the building was created by Hovhannes Madoyan. The building is one of the finest examples of Soviet modernism in the city, known for its unique architectural style. It serves as a welcoming landmark for visitors to this city of arts and crafts.

 


The jewel of this railway station is the stained glass window adorning the dome



Located on the site of an old building on the eastern side of the station square, the station can simultaneously service three passenger trains on high platforms, each 450 meters long, covered with a lightweight aluminum canopy. The building has a reinforced concrete frame, and the walls are made of Ani tuff masonry.

The façade of the building is adorned with a large and impressive bas-relief. The central part features a prominent dome with an impressive colored stained glass design, 18 meters in diameter, supported by intersecting arches, while a 30-meter-high tower with a clock decorated with gilded zodiac signs rises on the left.



Inside Gyumri Railway Station


In Soviet times, the first floor housed the operations hall, passenger waiting areas, a buffet with ancillary rooms, customs services, administrative offices, and baggage facilities. The second floor included a 120-seat restaurant, a cinema hall, rest rooms with 50 beds, and a nursery with 25 beds. A huge fresco in the restaurant area is now covered with wooden boards. Today, the second floor mainly serves as administrative offices. The two stairways leading to the second floor are decorated with frescoes depicting themes of Gyumri's life and landscapes.

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