Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

Economy | Housing | Sports | Education | Mass public transport | Commuter and long-distance buses | Rail | Air

🇰🇬 Bishkek (بی‌شکەک), formerly Pishpek and Frunze (Фрунзе), is the capital and largest city of Kyrgyzstan (Kyrgyz Republic). Bishkek is also the administrative centre of the Chuy Region. The province surrounds the city, although the city itself is not part of the province, but rather a province-level unit of Kyrgyzstan. Bishkek is situated near the Kazakhstan-Kyrgyzstan border.

Bishkek is situated at an altitude of about 800 metres (2,600 ft), just off the northern fringe of the Kyrgyz Ala-Too Range, an extension of the Tian Shan mountain range. North of the city, a fertile and gently undulating steppe extends far north into neighbouring Kazakhstan. The Chui River drains most of the area. Bishkek is connected to the Turkestan–Siberia Railway by a spur line.

Bishkek is a city of wide boulevards and marble-faced public buildings combined with numerous Soviet-style apartment blocks surrounding interior courtyards. There are also thousands of smaller privately built houses, mostly outside the city centre. Streets follow a grid pattern, with most flanked on both sides by narrow irrigation channels, watering innumerable trees to provide shade in the hot summers.

Economy Bishkek uses the Kyrgyzstan currency, the som. The economy in Bishkek is primarily agricultural, and agricultural products are sometimes bartered in the outlying regions. The streets of Bishkek are regularly lined with produce vendors in a market style venue. In most of the downtown area there is a more urban cityscape with banks, stores, markets and malls. Sought-after goods include hand-crafted artisan pieces, such as statues, carvings, paintings and many nature-based sculptures.

Housing As with many cities in post-Soviet states, housing in Bishkek has undergone extensive changes since the collapse of the Soviet Union. While housing was formerly distributed to citizens in the Soviet era, housing in Bishkek has since become privatised.

Though single-family houses are slowly becoming more popular, the majority of the residents live in Soviet-era apartments. Despite the Kyrgyz economy experiencing growth, increases in available housing have been slow with very little new construction. As a result of this growing prosperity and the lack of new formal housing, prices have been rising significantly—doubling from 2001 to 2002.

Those unable to afford the high housing price within Bishkek, notably internal migrants from rural villages and small provincial towns, often have to resort to informal squatter settlements on the city's outskirts. These settlements are estimated to house 400,000 people or about 30 percent of Bishkek's population. While many of the settlements have lacked basic necessities such as electricity and running water, recently, the local government has pushed to provide these services.

Sports Bishkek is home to Spartak, the largest football stadium in Kyrgyzstan and the only one eligible to host international matches. Several Bishkek-based football teams play on this pitch, including six-time Kyrgyzstan League champions, Dordoi Bishkek. Others include Alga Bishkek, Ilbirs Bishkek, and RUOR-Guardia Bishkek.

Bishkek hosted the 2014 IIHF Challenge Cup of Asia – Division I.

Education Educational institutions in Bishkek include: • APAP KR • American University of Central Asia • Arabaev Kyrgyz State University • Bishkek Humanities University • International Atatürk-Alatoo University • International University of Kyrgyzstan • Kyrgyz-Russian Slavic University • I.K. Akhunbaev Kyrgyz State Medical Academy • Kyrgyz State National University • Kyrgyz Technical University • Kyrgyz-Russian State University • Kyrgyz-Turkish MANAS University • Kyrgyz Uzbek University • Plato University of Management and Design • University of Central Asia.

In addition, the following international schools serve the expatriate community in Bishkek: • European School in Central Asia • Oxford International School Bishkek • Hope Academy of Bishkek • QSI International School of Bishkek • Silk Road International School.

Mass public transport Public transportation includes buses, electric trolley-buses, and public vans (known in Russian as marshrutka). The first bus and trolley bus services in Bishkek were introduced in 1934 and 1951, respectively.

Taxi cabs can be found throughout the city. The city is considering designing and building a light rail system (скоростной трамвай).

Commuter and long-distance buses There are two main bus stations in Bishkek. The smaller old Eastern Bus Station is primarily the terminal for minibusses to various destinations within or just beyond the eastern suburbs, such as Kant, Tokmok, Kemin, Issyk Ata, or the Korday border crossing.

Long-distance regular bus and minibus services to all parts of the country, as well as to Almaty (the largest city in neighbouring Kazakhstan) and Kashgar, China, run mostly from the newer grand Western Bus Station; only a smaller number run from the Eastern Station.

The Dordoy Bazaar on the north-eastern outskirts of the city also contains makeshift terminals for frequent minibusses to suburban towns in all directions (from Sokuluk in the west to Tokmak in the east) and to some buses taking traders to Kazakhstan and Siberia.

Rail As of 2007, the Bishkek-2 railway station sees only a few trains a day. It offers a popular three-day train service from Bishkek to Moscow.

There are also long-distance trains that leave for Siberia (Novosibirsk and Novokuznetsk), via Almaty, over the TurkSib route, and to Yekaterinburg (Sverdlovsk) in the Urals, via Astana. These services are remarkably slow (over 48 hours to Yekaterinburg), due to long stops at the border and the indirect route (the trains first have to go west for more than a 100 km (62 mi) before they enter the main TurkSib line and can continue to the east or north). For example, as of the fall of 2008, train No. 305 Bishkek-Yekaterinburg was scheduled to take 11 hours to reach the Shu junction—a distance of some 269 km (167 mi) by rail, and less than half of that by road.

Air The city is served by Manas International Airport (IATA code FRU), located approximately 25 km (16 mi) north-west of the city centre.

In 2002, the United States obtained the right to use Manas International Airport as an air base for its military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. Russia subsequently (2003) established an airbase of its own (Kant Air Base) near Kant, some 20 km (12 mi) east of Bishkek. It is based at a facility that used to be home to a major Soviet military pilot training school; one of its students, Hosni Mubarak, later became president of Egypt.

Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan 
Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
Image: Almutamid

Bishkek is rated Sufficiency by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network (GaWC) which evaluates and ranks the relationships between world cities in the context of globalisation. Sufficiency level cities are cities that have a sufficient degree of services so as not to be overly dependent on world cities.

Bishkek was ranked #735 by the Nomad List which evaluates and ranks remote work hubs by cost, internet, fun and safety. Bishkek has a population of over 1,054,000 people. Bishkek also forms the centre of the wider Kyrgyzstan state which has a population of over 6,729,363 people.

To set up a UBI Lab for Bishkek see: Twitter:

Twin Towns, Sister Cities Bishkek has links with:

🇰🇿 Almaty, Kazakhstan 🇯🇴 Amman, Jordan 🇹🇷 Ankara, Turkey 🇹🇲 Ashgabat, Turkmenistan 🇰🇿 Astana, Kazakhstan 🇺🇸 Colorado Springs, USA 🇶🇦 Doha, Qatar 🇰🇷 Gumi, South Korea 🇹🇷 İzmir, Turkey 🇷🇺 Kazan, Russia 🇺🇦 Kyiv, Ukraine 🇨🇳 Lianyungang, China 🇧🇾 Minsk, Belarus 🇰🇿 Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan 🇮🇷 Qazvin, Iran 🇹🇷 Samsun, Turkey 🇨🇳 Shenzhen, China 🇺🇿 Tashkent, Uzbekistan 🇮🇷 Tehran, Iran 🇹🇷 Trabzon, Turkey 🇷🇺 Ufa, Russia 🇨🇳 Ürümqi, China 🇨🇳 Wuhan, China 🇨🇳 Yinchuan, China
Text Atribution: Wikipedia Text under CC-BY-SA license | GaWC | Nomad

Antipodal to Bishkek is: -105.401,-42.872

Locations Near: Bishkek 74.599,42.8724

🇰🇬 Tokmok 75.283,42.833 d: 56  

🇰🇿 Kaskelen 76.617,43.2 d: 168  

🇰🇿 Almaty 76.932,43.229 d: 193.6  

🇰🇬 Talas 72.233,42.517 d: 197.3  

🇰🇬 Uzgen 73.3,40.767 d: 257.7  

🇰🇬 Özgön 73.3,40.767 d: 257.7  

🇰🇬 Jalal-Abad 73,40.933 d: 253  

🇰🇿 Konaev 77.083,43.883 d: 230.1  

🇰🇬 Osh 72.8,40.53 d: 300.2  

🇰🇬 Aravan 72.483,40.5 d: 316.9  

Antipodal to: Bishkek -105.401,-42.872

🇨🇱 Valdivia -73.233,-39.8 d: 17324.3  

🇨🇱 Osorno -73.133,-40.567 d: 17341.2  

🇨🇱 Port Montt -72.933,-41.467 d: 17351.3  

🇨🇱 Puerto Montt -72.933,-41.467 d: 17351.3  

🇨🇱 San Pedro de la Paz -73.1,-36.833 d: 17195.8  

🇨🇱 Talcahuano -73.117,-36.717 d: 17191.9  

🇨🇱 Concepción -73.05,-36.817 d: 17191  

🇨🇱 Chiguayante -73.017,-36.917 d: 17192.8  

🇨🇱 Temuco -72.667,-38.733 d: 17239.6  

🇨🇱 Coyhaique -72.067,-45.567 d: 17361.1  

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