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Town of Arkalyk.

Visit to town of Arkalyk.

“All summer we cut
Pits in the rocks with picks,
There is nothing to do with shovels:
Tear it with ammonite
Granites are not an easy stone
Solid rock underfoot
They turned out to be small
Those working ditches."

Olzhas Suleimenov. "Pits". 1959.

Trip to Arkalyk town.

Arkalyk as the town was founded in 1956 with the development of extraction of bauxite deposits. There is Naurzumsky preserve, which was founded in 1931. It is situated in 250km south of Kostanai, not far from motorway Kostanai-Arkalyk.
The center of the Naurzumsky preserve is the Dokuchaevka village, named so in 1946 in honor of the Russian naturalist Dokuchayev V.V. It is the zone, where Turgai birds of passage fly over. More than 150 kinds of birds one can see during the mass migration of birds in spring.
Arkalyk was founded in 1956, in connection with the development of the extraction of bauxite deposits. It is located in central Kazakhstan, formerly the center of the Turgai region, now the center of the eponymous district of the Kustanai region. Arkalyk is a classic example of Soviet economic policy.
The town was built in just ten years, from 1956 to 1965, in the bare steppe, near the Turgai bauxite mining administration, which mined about 20% of the bauxite ore in the USSR. Arkalyk in the 1980s was going to be turned into one of the industrial centers of the region: it became the center of the Turgai region, a large airport appeared in it capable of receiving passenger airliners, and the construction of an aircraft engine plant began.
It was founded in 1956, acquired the status of a town in 1965. The distance from the city of Arkalyk to the regional center of Kostanay is 480 km, to Astana - 670 km. The population in 2006 is 42 thousand people. (including: the city itself - 26 thousand people, 14 villages within the town limits and 3 rural districts - 16 thousand people).
The town is connected by railway with the regional center (the terminal station on the Esil - Derzhavinsk - Arkalyk branch). The Kostanay - Arkalyk road is asphalted, but in a badly damaged condition. The Zhezkazgan - Arkalyk road is unpaved, in wet weather it gets very wet and becomes difficult to pass even for freight transport.
There is an airport (located 6 km north-east of the city), capable of receiving aircraft of the Tu-154, Tu-134, etc.; during the Soviet era, flights to many cities of Kazakhstan were carried out from here, however, since the mid-1990s, the airport has been practically abandoned and is used only sporadically during search and rescue support of manned spacecraft landings.
Arkalyk was founded in 1956 as a settlement for geologists and builders. It owes its birth to the discovery of bauxite deposits here in the postwar years (raw material for the production of aluminum). On May 17, 1956, a joint resolution of the Central Committee of the CPSU and the Council of Ministers of the USSR was adopted, in which it was written in a separate line:
"On the basis of the Amangeldinsky bauxite deposit, build and commission the Torgai bauxite mines." In the 1960s, Arkalyk was declared an All-Union shock Komsomol construction site, and young people from all over the USSR began to flock here. In 1965 Arkalyk received the status of a city, in 1971 it became the center of the newly created Turgai region.
In the 1980s, the city reached its heyday: a meat processing plant, a poultry factory, a dairy plant, an elevator, a ceramic factory, a garment factory, a radio components plant were operating here, the construction of an aircraft engine plant was started;
The Turgai Bauxite Ore Administration (TBRU) mined up to 20% of the bauxite ore in the USSR. But, despite the success of industrial production, the economy of the Turgai region lagged behind in development from other regions of Kazakhstan, since its economy was 90% agricultural.
The region constantly demanded subsidies from the republican budget, therefore in June 1988 it was liquidated, and its territory was divided between the Kustanai and Akmola regions. Part of the infrastructure (for example, the regional radio station) was removed from the city, which ceased to be a regional center, and a number of promising industrial facilities were frozen.
In 1989, active residents of Arkalyk formed an organizing committee for the restoration of the Turgai region, thanks to an appeal to the leadership of the republic in August 1990, the Turgai region was formed again, Arkalyk again became a regional center.
Currently, the town of Arkalyk is included in the list of depressed cities in Kazakhstan with a very high level of unemployment. There is practically no industry in the city, with the exception of enterprises that support the town's life support, and the Torgai bauxite ore department, which is part of the structure of Aluminum of Kazakhstan JSC.
All bauxite ore mined here is sent to aluminum plants in Pavlodar and other regions. It is problematic to create an aluminum plant in Arkalyk itself due to the lack of powerful sources of water supply necessary for this.
In the area of ​​the city of Arkalyk there are 6 deposits of bauxite, raw materials for the aluminum industry: Arkalykskoye, Nizhne-Ashutskoye, Ushtobinskoye, Severnoe, Verkhne-Ashutskoye, Aktasskoye. The reserves of refractory clays are confined to the same deposits
At the stage of creating the economic infrastructure of the town, the mechanisms of the subsequent collapse of the town were laid: The choice of location was determined by the location of the bauxite mines, not by the convenience of the location. As a result, it turned out that Arkalyk does not have a reliable water supply (except for a reservoir in the center of the city and two drying up rivers Akzhar and Arkalyksay; from the name of the latter it follows that this is not a river at all, but a temporary watercourse).
The development program for the Turgai region was not created. The connection of the city with other towns of Central and Northern Kazakhstan was not thought out. Arkalyk turned out to be the final station of the short railway line Esil - Arkalyk, the final point of the asphalt highway (badly broken and worn out) Kostanay - Esil - Arkalyk, and the starting point of the dirt road (difficult to pass) Arkalyk - Zhezkazgan. No other means of communication were offered to the town.
The degradation of the city began in 1993-1994, production fell into decay, and the outflow of the population to other regions of Kazakhstan began. The work of utilities was disrupted: long interruptions in electricity, heating and water supply became a daily occurrence.
A number of neighborhoods in the city were completely abandoned in the 1990s. Enterprising businessmen from other regions of Kazakhstan dismantled some of the houses and took out building materials. At the turn of the XXth and XXIst centuries, local authorities carried out a campaign to relocate the remaining residents from the microdistricts to the compactly delineated city center, which made it possible to reduce the costs of operating communications and significantly increase the reliability of supplying the population with water, heating, electricity and gas.
Currently, the city of Arkalyk is included in the list of depressed cities in Kazakhstan with a very high level of unemployment. There is practically no industry in the city, with the exception of enterprises that support the city's life support.
The construction of a new railway Arkalyk - Shubarkol is in full swing, which will significantly reduce the cost of heating the apartments of citizens. The main task of the new section of the railway is to make Arkalyk a transit city.
10 freight trains and 2 passenger trains will operate on the new railway. Their number will increase over time. The total length of the route will be 214 kilometers. Coal from Shubarkol, for heating the city of Arkalyk, is currently being delivered through Karaganda to Astana, and then to Russia, and then from Russia to Arkalyk.
The new section will relieve this direction of the railway. In addition, the delivery of coal to Arkalyk will save on heating. A ton of fuel oil now costs 40,000 tenge, while a ton of Shubarkol coal at retail costs 8,000 tenge. A feasibility study is now being prepared for the construction of a coal-fired boiler house.
Coal is the most energy-intensive fuel. The railway will be put into operation in 2014, it is planned to spend about 135 billion tenge on its construction. Arkalyk is called the town of youth, there is a pedagogical institute, four colleges, one lyceum, a lot of nonresident students study, dormitories are being built for them, which have no analogues in the republic.
The town Palace of Culture, the Kairat sports complex, a museum, a theater, a library, a swimming pool, entertainment centers, including the Balazhan Trade House, and Sayora and Zhastar restaurants are functioning.
And also it is impossible not to mention another architectural complex, which has become a real decoration of the town - the bath and recreation complex "Tamasha" with saunas, a gym, swimming pools, which is in charge of LLP "Aluminstroy".
The second building of the Pedagogical Institute was also taken into account, which was completely restored with state support. This allows the younger generation to develop in all directions, because absolutely everything has been created for this.
Arkalyk is also popularly called a space harbor; several dozen cosmonauts are honorary citizens of the town. Many crews of ships, after successfully completing a mission in space, one after another, landed on the ancient Torgai land, not far from the city of Arkalyk.
A characteristic feature of the small town of Arkalyk is the presence of a basic industry and the prevalence of urban development and lifestyle. The leading city-forming enterprise is a large enterprise - a branch of JSC "Aluminum of Kazakhstan" Torgayskoye bauxite ore administration.
The enterprise is engaged in the extraction of bauxite and refractory clays. Raw materials are supplied: bauxite to the Pavlodar aluminum plant, refractory clays to Russia. Agriculture is the second leading branch of the town material production. 30 LLPs, 334 peasant farms and 5 state enterprises are engaged in the production of agricultural products, including the Arkalyk poultry farm of Agrointerptitsa LLP, which was launched in 2009.

Book: "Modern Kazakhstan", 2006, Almaty. Newspaper "Torgai" No. 8 February 7, 2009. Weekly newspaper "Arkalyk Khabar" №12 March 18, 2011. "Torgay Juan" Zhokan Kozabaev 1999 f. Conceptual framework for celebrating the 20th anniversary of Independence. The weekly newspaper Arkalyk Khabar - "The country will not remember such a harvest." September 7, 2011.Social and economic passport of the city of Arkalyk, Kostanay region, State Institution "Department of Economics and Budget Planning of the Akimat of Arkalyk City" 2011. Torgai newspaper - "Arkalyk is the city of youth, the city of hopes! .." No. 45 November 4, 2011