Georgian government to build a tourist complex near Enguri HPP
According to Minister of Economy Natia Turnava, the Georgian government is launching a project to build a tourist complex at the Enguri hydroelectric power station, the largest hydroelectric power station in Georgia.
Turnava noted that the largest hydroelectric power plant in Georgia is not only important in terms of energy but is also a unique place for tourism.
“As you know, we have been working for many years to create a tourist complex at the Enguri hydroelectric power station, which will be visited by many people from different parts of the world. This year, on behalf of the Prime Minister, we are beginning to implement this project. The Energy Development Fund has received an assignment, an initial budget has been allocated, and we will complete this project. I am confident that this will strengthen Georgia as a whole”, said Natia Turnava.
The detailed design of the Enguri HPP as a world-class landmark was completed in 2018. Then the director general of the National Agency for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage of Georgia Nikoloz Antadze said that construction work would begin in the near future.
The infrastructure of the tourist area of the Enguri Dam includes observation decks, a cable car, a Science and Discovery Center, an open-air concert venue and the world’s highest elevator inside the dam. The concept for the development of the hydroelectric power station also considers the use of the dam for various installations and images.
By the decision of the Government of Georgia dated September 4, 2015, the arched dam of the Enguri-HPP received the status of a national monument.
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The Enguri hydroelectric power station where the large-scale maintenance work was completed at the end of April, now generates 10-15% more electricity.
Enguri HPP is a unique facility. The hydroelectric power station is located directly in the zone of the Georgian-Abkhaz conflict and is currently the only Georgian-Abkhaz joint project – both Abkhaz and Georgians work here. Electricity is also distributed in two directions.
In 1993, Tbilisi lost control over Abkhazia and the Enguri hydroelectric power station, the largest in the Caucasus.
The turbine hall named after the Enguri hydroelectric power station substation and the cascade of differential hydroelectric power plants are located in the Gali region of Abkhazia; and a 270-meter-high concrete dam, a reservoir and part of a water intake tunnel are located in the Tsalenjikha region, in the territories controlled by Georgia.
Currently, the parties jointly operate the hydropower plant and distribute the electricity it generates. According to an unofficial agreement between Tbilisi and Sukhumi, Abkhazia consumes 40% of electricity and Georgia receives the remaining 60%. In winter, when there is little water, almost all electricity goes to Abkhazia.
For Abkhazia, the station is the only source of electricity, therefore, restoration work at the hydroelectric power station periodically puts Abkhazia in a particularly difficult situation.