Ilham Aliyev attended the opening of the Darnagul station of the Baku Underground

29 june 2011, 20:10

Another station of the Baku Underground, Darnagul, has opened in the 7th micro-district of the capital.

The ceremony was attended by President Ilham Aliyev and his wife Mehriban Aliyeva.

Representatives of the public and employees of the Baku Underground warmly welcomed the head of state and his wife.

Flowers were presented to First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva.

President Ilham Aliyev cut a ribbon marking the opening of the station.

The Deputy Prime Minister, Abid Sharifov, the chairman of the Baku Underground, Tagi Ahmadov, and the chairman of the board of the “AzerTunnelMetroTikinti” Open Joint-Stock Company, Shaig Afandiyev, informed the head of state that the Baku Underground, having covered a long road of development in 44 years, had turned into a diverse network of 22 stations and 32.9 km of underground steel lines. The development of the underground largely occurred in the years when Azerbaijan was led by its nationwide leader Heydar Aliyev. Before the great leader had assumed leadership of the country, the Baku Underground had only six stations and 8.8 km of underground lines. After 1969, a total of 14 stations and 21.1 km of underground lines were built and commissioned.

It was indicated that thanks to the work and attention of President Ilham Aliyev and the allocation of nearly 600 million manats for the underground construction in recent years, underground lines were developed, while the Nasimi, Azadlig Avenue stations and the second exit of the 28 May station were commissioned. The Icheri Shahar station has been fully reconstructed. Besides, construction is under way at the Avtovokzal and Memar Ajami-2 stations. The sustainable development of the Baku Underground, which is playing an exceptional role in passenger transports, is part of the “State Program on 20-year development of the Baku Underground” approved by a resolution of President Ilham Aliyev.

The head of state was informed that Darnagul was the 23rd station of the Baku Underground. The construction of the northern section of the third underground line, which consists of three stations, including Darnagul, and the train shed commenced in 1989. In the early 1990s construction work was suspended and resumed only in November 2006. The Nasimi and Azadlig Avenue stations have already been commissioned in the northern part of the Baku Underground. The Darnagul station, built on Suleyman Sani Akhundov Street in the Binagadi district as a continuation of the Azadlig Avenue station, is part of the 7th micro-district of the capital.

It was indicated that a new park was set up on an area of 10.2 hectares covering the above-ground section of the station, that landscaping and amenity planting activities were carried out, a sewage system for runoff waters built, a water pipeline laid and an irrigation system created. There are 34 benches and 120 lamp posts to ensure external lighting. A new asphalt coating has been laid. The station will be supplied with electricity from a 10-kilovolt substation.

It was also noted that entrances into the station are equipped with information displays. There are two subway crossings and four entry-exit points to access the station.

President Ilham Aliyev and his wife Mehriban Aliyeva were informed in detail of the interactive touch-screen information kiosk installed at the station. It was indicated that by selecting one of the languages on the display – Azerbaijani, English or Russian, a passenger could receive detailed information on the duration of the journey, transfer stations and facilities located in the vicinity of the destination station.

The head of state was informed that the total length of the throughput complex of the new station was 1,548 linear meters and of the station complex 302 linear meters. The station appeals to the eye due to the modern architectural style in which it was built. The ornaments used in the decoration of the platform and walls of the station are based on elements of Azerbaijani architecture. Natural marble and granite imported from Ukraine, Turkey and India were used in the face work at the station. The column-free platform with an arched ceiling is lit using the “Durlum” assembly suspension system from Germany.

The head of state and his wife then watched a film documenting the attention and care of nationwide leader Heydar Aliyev and President Ilham Aliyev for the development of the Baku Underground. The film provides detailed information about the development road covered by the Baku Underground in the years when Azerbaijan was headed by great leader Heydar Aliyev. It was noted that President Ilham Aliyev gave a further impetus to the development of the Baku Underground. The film also dwells upon the latest tunnel construction equipment from Germany which, starting from August of this year, will be used in the construction of new underground tunnels. It was indicated that this would enable completion of the work with better quality and faster.

It was indicated that the SOS alarm system has been used on the Baku Underground for the first time. President Ilham Aliyev and his wife Mehriban Aliyeva were also informed in detailed of the security system of the Baku Underground and passengers. It was noted that thanks to the funds allocated to the Baku Underground at the end of last year about 3,000 CCTV cameras were installed. As is the case with all other stations, the Darnagul station is equipped with systems of video surveillance, of calculation of passengers and identification, which fully cover tunnels and stations and communicate the information to the server center. These systems ensure maximum security of the underground and passengers.

It was stressed that three German escalators had been installed linking the station platform to the Darnagul station ticket hall. A new-type digital interval clock is also available on the platform.

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Congratulating the ceremony participants on the opening of the new station, President Ilham Aliyev said:

My congratulations! The opening of the Darnagul station is a wonderful event. Another underground station is being commissioned in Baku. I would like to sincerely congratulate you on this occasion. It is a beautiful, nice and comfortable station. The most cutting-edge technologies have been applied here. Security is fully ensured. Station design is also beautiful. The station has been built and commissioned in a short period of time. This brings the number of underground stations in Baku to 23.

Underground construction in our city has been progressing very fast in recent years. We can say that a new station is opened every year. Two years ago we celebrated the opening of the Azadlig Avenue station. The Darnagul station is a logical continuation of that work. In 2008, the Nasimi station was built. New stations are to be constructed in the years ahead.

In general, in accordance with the adopted program, six new underground stations are to be built in Baku before 2015. This is a very large program. Of course, the construction of six additional stations in a short period of time requires great professionalism and financial resources. I think we can implement this program thanks to the recently purchased equipment.

After 2015, the second stage of our program, the construction of new stations will commence. We have divided this program into two in order to make it more realistic, specific and short-term. But the integrated program on the underground development envisages the construction of dozens of additional stations. This program is to be implemented by 2030, and beautiful underground stations are to be built throughout our city. This is of great importance because the underground is the most convenient and cheapest transport. Thanks to the new approach and a nice new design, the underground stations also adorn our city from an architectural point of view.

Underground construction is a difficult business requiring huge technical capacities, professionalism and financial resources. By doing this work we want to create comfort for city residents. The people of Baku will probably know that underground construction is an area in which investment practically doesn’t pay back. Primarily because our fare is very low. We have the lowest tariffs in the world. On the other hand, underground construction is almost always of social nature because the funds invested here and those to be invested in the construction of new stations in the years ahead are intended to facilitate people’s comfort.

Social issues, including those of city transport, are being successfully dealt with in Azerbaijan. New nice roads are under construction, new buses are being purchased. Nice and comfortable taxis have been bought. Such taxis can be seen in the most developed cities of the world. I want their number to increase soon, so that our citizens have quality transport vehicles.

This is the work we have done. This is a reality, real work. The ideas expressed during a meeting I chaired some time ago are being implemented. The program adopted after the meeting is being executed. All our programs are of specific nature, each program is based on a specific schedule. Every program is backed up with financial resources and technical capacities.

The underground construction equipment demonstrated here today is the world’s best and top-quality equipment. The use of this equipment will make tunneling work even faster, further improve its quality and taste. So I think this opening is evidence of the fact that the stations built in the last several years and the work done are already of systematic nature.

Further stations are to be opened in 2013. Two stations will be commissioned in 2013, and we will be building new stations every year thereafter. Sufficient funds are envisaged in the state budget. There is professionalism. I am very pleased that underground construction is carried out by Azerbaijani specialists. This is a good indicator. It is a very complex issue. Underground construction workers can confirm that it is perhaps the most difficult issue.

I am very glad that we have a school and qualified professionals, that these personnel are being retrained and their professional skills are improved. We must always coordinate our steps with global processes. Among these, we must import the most advanced technologies to Azerbaijan, and we are doing that.

My congratulations on this occasion. I want to thank everyone who has contributed to the construction of this station. Let me also congratulate those living in the vicinity, they will have great conditions. Rest assured that this work will be continued. Congratulations again!

Expressing her gratitude to the head of state, merited teacher Zarish Malikova said:

Our esteemed and dear President Ilham Aliyev! We would like to congratulate you again on coming to the Binagadi district on behalf of the residents of our district, ordinary people and youth. We are very grateful to Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva. We are thankful for the time she has found to meet with us, residents of the Binagadi district, despite her busy schedule.

You are very attached to your people, you are very close to us, and this applies to the people of Binagadi too. We have been looking forward to seeing you in Binagadi ever since you were elected President. And, to be honest, when it happens rarely we miss you. You gratify us a lot every time you come here. On your instruction, 12 schools have been renovated, four schools and 14 additional school buildings constructed and commissioned in the Binagadi district. This is a great success. This is why we always support you and consider ourselves very happy because we live in a republic that has a President like you.
Your current visit is also a holiday for us. Look at the present we have received! The opening of the Azadlig Avenue station is followed by the opening of Darnagul. We are grateful to you for that.

I would like to recall the opening of the training base of the Vatan youth football center. Every time we pass by it on our way to work, we think proudly that this is one of the dearest presents of President Ilham Aliyev. The renovation of kindergartens, construction of an additional building of the music school are also gratifying. They inspire us to serve our people even better. We, representatives of the intelligentsia, will try to fulfill all your instructions, support your domestic and foreign policies and raise the younger generation which will follow in your footsteps.

Also invaluable is the work being done for our country by Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva. All women consider her a role model and try to follow her example. The Heydar Aliyev Foundation has certainly made an invaluable contribution to the construction of over 2,000 schools in the republic. You are worthy successors of the great leader. I wish you great successes.

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you very much. Additional programs on the socioeconomic development of the Binagadi district and the Binagadi settlement are being implemented, roads and water pipelines are being laid. Therefore, there will be many more opening ceremonies and we will be meeting often.

The head of a department at Baku clinical hospital No 2 named after M. Afandiyev, PhD in Medicine Nizami Mehtizadeh, thanked President Ilham Aliyev for the attention and care for the development of our capital. He said:

Mr. President, dear Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva. Every visit of yours is a holiday for us, it gives us a great moral boost. Why? Because your visits result in the solution of problems in our district. These steps are taken to improve the well-being and social conditions of the people. I can talk about this for a long time. But everything is obvious. The landscaping work, the programs on the socioeconomic development of districts, the renewal of communications in our republic, the construction of new lines, the reconstruction – all this is only a small fraction of your work for the benefit of the people.

All your decrees and resolutions have always been socially oriented. A graphic example of that is your approval yesterday of the Action Plan (2011-2015) on the implementation of the “State program on poverty reduction and sustainable development in the Republic of Azerbaijan for 2008-2015”.

Your instructions pertaining to our district, the issues raised during your visits have been fulfilled at a very high level.

I want to recall one issue: when Turkish pilots were performing aerial acrobatics in the skies over Baku and all our people were rejoicing, our nationwide leader Heydar Aliyev, said: “There will come a time when Azerbaijani Falcons will be maneuvering in the skies over Azerbaijan, and you will see that.”

I am grateful to you. Thanks to your hard work, the persistent and logical policies and the great care for our army, that dream of the great leader has come true. The whole world saw on 26 June that the independent Azerbaijani state has indeed covered a long road in a short period of time. The Armed Forces of Azerbaijan are the most powerful army in the South Caucasus. This army is capable of restoring the country’s territorial integrity, and it is ready to do so under the leadership of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief at any moment. I am very grateful to you for that.

People in Azerbaijan say: May Allah protect you! Because there is still a lot to be done to take Azerbaijan to the level the great leader wanted to see. We must take Azerbaijan to grandiose victories together with you. Thank you and welcome.

I want to say a few words about the work being done by Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva. I am fond of Mugham, and I watched the latest contest from beginning to end. I said there that Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva has done invaluable work for to develop Azerbaijani Mugham. It is impossible to measure Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva’s contribution to the discovery of gifted children in remote districts, their formation as professional singers over a short period of time and preservation of our classical Mugham. For this, Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva, I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart. May Allah protect you! I am confident that we will achieve many more victories together with you. Thank you.

President Ilham Aliyev: We still need to do a lot. But there is rapid development in all spheres. You have spoken about the military parade. Our army is indeed one of the strongest not only in this region, not only in the South Caucasus, but also on the global scale. It is among the world’s strongest armies both from the standpoint of professionalism, combat readiness, military potential, and technically. We have achieved that in a short period of time.

Today certain foreign circles that are not sufficiently familiar with the matter are accusing Azerbaijan of pursuing the policy of armament and paying great attention to the army. All countries should pay attention to the army. Recently, in the wake of the developments ongoing in Europe, there were suggestions that European countries should develop their military budgets. We are doing that. This is our sovereign right. If we had invested only in the army construction, the question could have been asked: why? Since our state budget has grown 16-20 times, we can certainly allocate resources to build the army, the underground and cultural facilities. This shows that our country is developing and its financial capabilities are growing too.

I want to stress the hard work and talent of the Azerbaijani people which have created such opportunities. The great innovations being created throughout the country are the achievements of the Azerbaijani people. We have lived as an independent nation for 20 years. We have proved to ourselves and indeed to the whole world that we can live independently, and live well. We can achieve the highest development rate in the world and import the world's most advanced technologies.

Just have a look: we are applying the best practices in the area of transport. Look at the great roads we are building! The city transport, the underground construction. The underground construction also shows that our country is developing rapidly. Non-developing countries don’t invest in the underground. Only rapidly developing countries are investing in the underground. For instance, in the first years of independence we were paying more attention to economic issues. Money was invested in profitable sectors. But now we have the opportunities and the will to develop all the spheres, including social.

There are still many problems. There are issues awaiting solution. Most importantly, we have specific programs on each direction. In the area of army construction, in the sphere of culture, underground construction, transport, social issues, private enterprise, economic development, poverty reduction – there are results on every direction. This is a reality. These are not just words and intentions, there is a specific program. This is a reality. This reality has been accomplished by us, by you. And a lot still remains to be done.

Congratulations again on this remarkable event. I wish you good health.

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In conclusion, representatives of the public and employees of the Baku Underground had their picture taken with President Ilham Aliyev and his wife Mehriban Aliyeva.