As the Ashgabat correspondent of Turkmenistan.ru report, filling up a new Ashgabat-Karakum-Dashoguz railroad with lose gravel has been completed and laying down of the trunk's "golden link" will begin in the coming days marking the end of works at this large-scale construction site which is very important for the republic.
A 540-km railway through the Karakum desert connecting southern and northern regions of Turkmenistan by a reliable mode of transportation will be of great economic and strategic importance. It should be noted that commissioning of the Trans Karakum railway will shorten more than 2 times the travel period from the country's capital to its northern province, Dashoguz.
Let us remind you that until now trains from Ashgabat to Dashoguz ran along a bypass route - through Mary and Lebap provinces - passing along the entire border with Uzbekistan at its final leg. It is important to stress that the Trans Karakum trunk was built without inviting foreign specialists. All works have been completed by subsidiary enterprises of the Ministry of railway transportation of Turkmenistan.
According to the reports, inauguration of the new railway Ashgabat-Karakum-Dashoguz is to be held on the administrative border of Akhal and Dashoguz provinces, at the new station of Ichoguz (former Darvaza). Here, in the very center of the desert, a new white marble railway station with a capacity of 100 people a day was built. On the eve of this important event finishing works in the station's inner rooms were completed. Station tracks and land square were improved.
Finishing works also near completion at a newly-built locomotive depot in Ichoguz. Cottages for the station's staff and locomotive crews were built.
In all, 17 stations will function along the Ashgabat-Dashoguz route. There are plans to either develop the infrastructure of existing villages or create new settlements around these stations. Some 130 bridges and railway pipe passages of bigger diameter over water barriers will be built along the new railroad. It is also important that a modern highway, Ashgabat-Dashoguz, is also being constructed along the railway.
As the Ashgabat correspondent of Turkmenistan.ru has learnt from the Ministry of railway transportation of Turkmenistan, the new railway across the Karakum desert is the third large-scale project implemented over the years of Turkmenistan's independence. Earlier, a 132 km stretch of 280 km Tejen-Serahs-Meshkhed railway as well as 205 km long Turkmenabat (former Charjow)-Atamurat (former Kerki) railway were build in the country.