In an impressive architectural re-styling effort led by the government of Turkmenistan, an area measuring 22 sqkm in the capital Ashgabat boasts 543 new buildings clad with 4,513,584 m² of white marble. Or put another way, the surface area of marble to urban surface area is a startling ratio of 1:4.87. 20% of Ashgabat is marble! This transformation has been happening since 1991 when Turkmenistan gained independence from the former Soviet Union and is being funded by natural gas resources. The choice of aesthetic for the Marble Architecture of Revolution was  determined by the Turkembashi, Saparmyrat Niyazov, the head of Turkmens. Given that ‘Ask’ in Turkmen means ‘love’ and ‘abat’; means land, Ashgabat, a city of love, today has increasingly a heart of marble. The main avenue, for example, Bitarap Türkmenistan Sayolu, is 12.6 km long and lined with 170 buildings clad with a total of 1,156,818 m² of white marble…


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