Shymkent

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Shymkent
Шымкент
Чимкент
Night view of New Memorial in Ordabasy Square
Night view of New Memorial in Ordabasy Square
Shymkent is located in Kazakhstan
Shymkent
Shymkent
Location in Kazakhstan
Coordinates: 42°19′0″N 69°35′45″E / 42.31667°N 69.59583°E / 42.31667; 69.59583
Country Kazakhstan
Province South Kazakhstan Province
Founded 12th century
Government
 • Akim (mayor) Rauan Abeniaz
Area
 • Total 347 km2 (134 sq mi)
Elevation 506 m (1,660 ft)
Population (2011)Estimation[1]
 • Total 637,800
 • Density 1,800/km2 (4,800/sq mi)
Time zone BTT (UTC+6)
Postal code 160000
Area code(s) (+7) 7252
Vehicle registration X
Website www.shymkent.ru
One of the central districts (view from citadel of ancient city)
Historical region "Old City"(view from ancient city's citadel)
Night Shymkent

Shymkent (Kazakh: Шымкент / Şımkent), formerly known as Chimkent (Russian: Чимкент) until 1993, is the capital city of South Kazakhstan Province, the most populated region in Kazakhstan. It is the third most populous city in Kazakhstan behind Almaty and Astana with a population of 629,600 (2011).[1] A major railroad junction on the Turkestan-Siberia Railway, the city is also a notable cultural centre, with an international airport. Shymkent is situated 690 km west of Almaty and 120 km to the north of Tashkent, Uzbekistan. 603,499 (2009 Census results);[2] 423,902 (1999 Census results).[2]

History[edit]

Shymkent was founded in the 12th century[3] as a caravanserai to protect the Silk Road town of Sayram, 10 km to the east. Shymkent grew as a market center for trade between Turkic nomads and the settled Sogdians. It was destroyed several times: by Genghis Khan, soldiers from the southern Khanates, and by nomad attacks. In the early 19th century it became part of the khanate of Kokand. It was captured by the Russians in 1864.[4] It was renamed Chernyaev in 1914 and renamed Shymkent in 1924. Following the Russian conquest, Shymkent was a city of trade between nomadic Turks and sedentary Turks, and was famous for its kumis.[5]

There was a gulag located near Shymkent, and many Russian-speaking people came to the area via imprisonment.[6]

The name Shymkent comes from two words: shym meaning "turf, and kent meaning "city". Shymkent and Chimkent have identical translations.

After Kazakhstan gained independence, the city was renamed Shymkent in 1993 as part of the government’s campaign to apply Kazakh names to cities. The formal spelling of Шымкент (Shymkent) as codified in Kazakhstan's Constitution goes against the Russian spelling rules of never having the letter "ы" follow the letter "ш". As a result, the new name Шымкент (Shymkent) is used only in Kazakhstan, while Russia and some other countries using Russian language continue to use the original spelling Чимкент (Chimkent).

Geography[edit]

Climate[edit]

Shymkent features a borderline continental climate (Köppen climate classification Dsa). Shymkent features hot, relatively dry summers and cold winters. However, winters here are noticeably warmer than in cities such as Almaty and Astana, with the mean monthly temperature during the city’s coldest month (January) averaging around -1 C. Shymkent averages just under 600 mm of precipitation annually.

Climate data for Shymkent (1981–2010)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 22.2
(72)
24.5
(76.1)
30.7
(87.3)
33.0
(91.4)
37.8
(100)
43.0
(109.4)
44.3
(111.7)
42.2
(108)
39.2
(102.6)
34.4
(93.9)
30.5
(86.9)
25.4
(77.7)
44.3
(111.7)
Average high °C (°F) 4.1
(39.4)
6.6
(43.9)
12.9
(55.2)
19.2
(66.6)
25.1
(77.2)
30.0
(86)
32.7
(90.9)
32.1
(89.8)
27.2
(81)
18.8
(65.8)
12.0
(53.6)
6.0
(42.8)
18.89
(66.02)
Daily mean °C (°F) −0.7
(30.7)
1.6
(34.9)
7.6
(45.7)
13.6
(56.5)
19.1
(66.4)
23.7
(74.7)
26.3
(79.3)
25.3
(77.5)
19.9
(67.8)
12.3
(54.1)
6.4
(43.5)
0.9
(33.6)
13
(55.39)
Average low °C (°F) −4.8
(23.4)
−2.7
(27.1)
3.0
(37.4)
8.3
(46.9)
12.9
(55.2)
16.7
(62.1)
19.1
(66.4)
17.9
(64.2)
12.8
(55)
6.6
(43.9)
1.7
(35.1)
−3.1
(26.4)
7.37
(45.26)
Record low °C (°F) −31.1
(−24)
−28.9
(−20)
−23.9
(−11)
−5.0
(23)
−2.8
(27)
5.5
(41.9)
7.8
(46)
7.0
(44.6)
−1.1
(30)
−12.0
(10.4)
−30.0
(−22)
−26.1
(−15)
−31.1
(−24)
Precipitation mm (inches) 73
(2.87)
70
(2.76)
83
(3.27)
69
(2.72)
56
(2.2)
16
(0.63)
12
(0.47)
4
(0.16)
10
(0.39)
41
(1.61)
67
(2.64)
75
(2.95)
576
(22.67)
 % humidity 75 73 67 63 56 44 39 34 39 55 69 75 57
Source: [7]

Demographics[edit]

According to the census of 2011, the city had 637,800 inhabitants.[9]

Economy[edit]

Formerly dominated by lead mining, industrial growth began in the 1930s.

A lead smelter was opened in Shymkent in 1934[10] or 1938.[11] It supplied a major part of the USSR's metals needs, copper as well as lead and others, including three-quarters of all bullets fired by the Red Army. Smelting continued until 2008, causing extreme levels of pollution (lead, cadmium et al.) in the surrounding ground, and then controversially restarted in 2010, briefly, under a major UK-listed company, Kazakhmys.[10]

The city also has industries producing refined zinc, processed karakul pelts, textiles, foodstuffs, and pharmaceuticals. Also, the city has a medium-sized refinery, which is owned and operated by PetroKazakhstan.

Main sights[edit]

  • Ordabasy circle, site of Friday Mosque and MIG Memorial
  • Regional Studies and History Museum
  • Victory Park
  • Central Park
  • Museum of Repression
  • Afghan War Memorial
  • Arboretum
  • Nauryz/Navruz Holiday Celebrations over Spring Solstice
  • Al-Farabi Square
  • Mega Shopping Center

Sport[edit]

In popular culture[edit]

In Command & Conquer: Generals,Shymkent is the starting point of the GLA counterattack by destroying the Chinese presence and a local hydroelectric dam to flood out the Chinese outposts in the riverside.

Sister cities[edit]

City Country Year
Stevenage United Kingdom United Kingdom
İzmir Turkey Turkey
Adana Turkey Turkey
Mogilev Belarus Belarus
Grosseto Italy Italy
Pattaya Thailand Thailand
Khujand Tajikistan Tajikistan

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Estimation 2011-11-21 (in rus.)
  2. ^ a b "Население Республики Казахстан" (in Russian). Департамент социальной и демографической статистики. Retrieved 8 December 2013. 
  3. ^ Peoples of central Asia. By Lawrence Krader. Published by Indiana University, 1971
  4. ^ http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/111610/Shymkent
  5. ^ Through Russian central Asia. By Stephen Graham. Published by The Macmillan Company, 1916
  6. ^ The Gulag Archipelago, 1918–1956: an experiment in literary investigation. By Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn, H. T. Willetts, Thomas P. Whitney. Published by Westview Press, 1997
  7. ^ "Погода и Климат". Pogoda.ru.net. 
  8. ^ www.stat.kz
  9. ^ http://www.ontustik.stat.kz/rus/index.php
  10. ^ a b People & Power (TV programme), Al Jazeeera English, Robin Forestier, 20 February 2014
  11. ^ The USSR. By John C. Dewdney. Published by Dawson, 1976

External links[edit]