Thousands in Gyumri Receive New Homes


GYUMRI, Armenia (RFE/RL)–More than a thousand families in Armenia’s second largest city of Gyumri received new apartments on Friday over two decades after a powerful earthquake that destroyed their homes.

The Armenian government has funded the construction of their apartment blocks as part of a nearly $200 million plan to complete the protracted reconstruction of the country’s northern regions still reeling from the December 1988 quake that killed some 25,000 people and made hundreds of thousands of others homeless.

According to government data, more than 7,000 local families still live in shacks and other temporary shelters. The government has pledged to provide some 5,300 of them with new and adequate housing by 2013.

In Gyumri alone, the government is to build a total of just over 3,000 apartments. Urban Development Minister Vartan Vartanian assured local residents on Friday that the ongoing construction of the remaining 2,000 or new homes will be complete by the end of next year.

Vartanian spoke during the official inauguration of the 1,056 new apartments attended by President Serzh Sarkisian. The ceremony was originally due to take place last December.

It was delayed after Sarkisian visited the residential complex located in a Gyumri suburb and strongly criticized the quality of the construction work done by a private company. The company, called Glendale Hills, was given until mid-May to eliminate all shortcomings mainly related to the apartments’ interior design and equipment.

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6 Comments

  1. Vanessa Kachadurian said:

    I saw these on my last trip to Gyumri and the buildings are truly a treasure to the families of Gyumri. Glendale Hills has been fantastic with all of these and the Armenian Diaspora a big help.

  2. Greg said:

    One wonders whether these new homes will be earthquake proof or not. God forbid, if another earthquake takes place in Gumri, then all these new developments will go to waste. Just a thought.

  3. Arn. SWEDEN. said:

    Armenia’s second largest city Gyumri

    Comment –

    I great thee City with the Name of my Forfather – Gomer -,
    the Ancestor of all Peoples of German origin.

    Thus –

    Genesis chapter 10 vers –

    3And the sons of Gomer: Ashkenaz and Riphath and Togarmah.

    God bless Gyumri !!!.

    Arn.Sweden.

  4. Garo M. Tertzakian, M.D. said:

    Vahe Yacoubian and his Glendale Hills company should be congratulated for achieving so mush in such a short time. On October 1, 2009, I was fortunate to be present at the delivery ceremony of dozens of newly built homes to their new owners by Prime Minister Tigran Sarkissian in the village of Nalband, the epicenter of the 1988 devastating earthquake. I was impressed by the design and the quality of construction of the new homes. It was an unforgettable experience to see the immense joy and gratitude of the villagers receiving the homes that some of them had helped build. As a witness of the destructive Armenia earthquake of December 1988, I am happy to see the reconstruction of the earthquake zone coming to a happy end by 2013. As the Armenians say “Oush lini, noush lini”.

  5. Ed said:

    I am happy for these families… How about all those families who are stillbeing forced by oligarchies out of there homes in Yerevan , in villages and now are seeking aryl in Turkey ? Is this not treason committed by the ruling elite?

  6. Arthur said:

    Its good that they finally provided people with homes but 22 years later. It should have been done earlier.

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