Ambrolauri (Georgian: ამბროლაური) is a city in Georgia, located in the northwestern part of the country, on both banks of the Rioni river, at an elevation of 550 m above sea level. The city serves as the seat of the Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti regional administration and of the Ambrolauri Municipality and had a population of 2,015 in 2021.[2] Its area is 2.8 km2.[1] Ambrolauri was first recorded in the 17th century as a place, where one of the palaces of the kings of Imereti was located. It acquired the city status in 1966.[3]

Ambrolauri
ამბროლაური
View of Ambrolauri in 2011
View of Ambrolauri in 2011
Flag of Ambrolauri
Official seal of Ambrolauri
Ambrolauri is located in Georgia
Ambrolauri
Ambrolauri
Location of Ambrolauri in Georgia
Ambrolauri is located in Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti
Ambrolauri
Ambrolauri
Ambrolauri (Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti)
Coordinates: 42°31′10″N 43°09′00″E / 42.51944°N 43.15000°E / 42.51944; 43.15000
Country Georgia
MkhareRacha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti
MunicipalityAmbrolauri
Area
 • Total2.6 km2 (1.0 sq mi)
Elevation
550 m (1,800 ft)
Population
 (2021)[2]
 • Total2,015
 • Density780/km2 (2,000/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+4 (Georgian Time)
Post code
0400
Area code+995 439
Websiteambrolauri.gov.ge

HistoryEdit

The territory of Ambrolauri has not been systematically studied archaeologically. The toponym Ambrolauri is known from the 17th century. The Russian diplomat Alexey Yevlev, who visited the Kingdom of Imereti in 1650, and then the Georgian scholar Prince Vakhushti, writing c. 1745, mention a royal castle at Ambrolauri, where the Krikhula River becomes a tributary of the Rioni. Only insignificant ruins of that palace have survived. The name of the city may have been derived from the surname Amarolisdze, while the settlement could have earlier been known as Metekhara, a toponym recorded in the 11th-century charter to the Nikortsminda Cathedral.[4]

In 1769, the Imeretian king Solomon I granted Ambrolauri to a prince from the Machabeli family, Zurab, an in-law of the Tsulukidze, one of the leading families in Racha. An old three-storey tower built of stone and lime, located in the city, is still known to the locals as the Machabeli Tower. Ruins of a stone hall church are also found nearby. An inscription from the church doorway makes mention of King George III of Imereti (r. 1605–1639) and his family. A hoard of hundreds of coins buried early in the 17th century, including those with Arabic inscription stuck at Tbilisi and those issued in the name of George II of Imereti (r. 1565–1585), was unearthed in 1909.[4]

After the Russian conquest of Imereti in 1810, Ambrolauri became a part of the Racha district (uyezd). In Soviet Georgia, it became the seat of the Ambrolauri district (raion) in 1930 and acquired the city status in 1966.[3] In 1934, Ambrolauri was renamed into Enukidze after the Soviet statesman Avel Yenukidze, on whose execution in 1937, the city's old name was restored.[5] In 1968, Ambrolauri had a population of 4,400.[6]

The city was damaged in the 1991 Racha earthquake. It experienced a decline in population and economic activity in the years of post-Soviet crisis. Ambrolauri became the seat of Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti regional administration in 1995. As a result of the local government reform in 2014, Ambrolauri was split from the homonymous municipality as a self-governing city and the city's population directly elected its first ever mayor.[7] In 2017 this decision was reverted and Ambrolauri, like six other cities, lost its self-governing status again when the central government deemed this reform too expensive and inefficient.[8]

ClimateEdit

Climate data for Ambrolauri (1981–2010)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 17.0
(62.6)
23.0
(73.4)
28.0
(82.4)
33.5
(92.3)
35.5
(95.9)
36.2
(97.2)
41.8
(107.2)
41.2
(106.2)
39.5
(103.1)
33.5
(92.3)
24.2
(75.6)
19.7
(67.5)
41.8
(107.2)
Average high °C (°F) 5.2
(41.4)
7.4
(45.3)
12.8
(55.0)
19.0
(66.2)
23.6
(74.5)
26.8
(80.2)
29.4
(84.9)
29.9
(85.8)
26.0
(78.8)
20.2
(68.4)
12.7
(54.9)
6.9
(44.4)
18.3
(64.9)
Daily mean °C (°F) 0.0
(32.0)
1.4
(34.5)
5.8
(42.4)
11.4
(52.5)
15.6
(60.1)
19.1
(66.4)
22.1
(71.8)
22.2
(72.0)
18.1
(64.6)
12.5
(54.5)
6.3
(43.3)
1.7
(35.1)
11.3
(52.3)
Average low °C (°F) −3.8
(25.2)
−3.0
(26.6)
0.7
(33.3)
5.5
(41.9)
9.4
(48.9)
13.2
(55.8)
16.5
(61.7)
16.3
(61.3)
12.2
(54.0)
7.0
(44.6)
1.8
(35.2)
−2.0
(28.4)
6.2
(43.2)
Record low °C (°F) −17.8
(0.0)
−18.8
(−1.8)
−12.4
(9.7)
−5.5
(22.1)
0.0
(32.0)
4.5
(40.1)
5.5
(41.9)
7.0
(44.6)
1.0
(33.8)
−3.5
(25.7)
−9.0
(15.8)
−19.0
(−2.2)
−19.0
(−2.2)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 96.5
(3.80)
70.8
(2.79)
77.1
(3.04)
84.2
(3.31)
98.7
(3.89)
96.0
(3.78)
84.8
(3.34)
79.8
(3.14)
86.4
(3.40)
115.9
(4.56)
108.7
(4.28)
100.3
(3.95)
1,112.4
(43.80)
Source: World Meteorological Organization[9]

GovernmentEdit

 
Ambrolauri Museum of Fine Arts

between 2014 and 2017 Ambrolauri was a self-governing city with its own municipal governance—a representative council (sakrebulo) and an executive body headed by a mayor. Effective the 2017 local election cycle, the governance of the City of Ambrolauri merged back with the Ambrolauri Municipality, a self-governing territorial subdivision.[8] Both the council and mayor are elected for a four-year term since 2017. As result of the roll-back of the self-governing status, the city only had its own mayor for one 3-year term.

Mayors of Ambrolauri
Name Party Years
Rati Namgaladze, b. 1965 Georgian Dream 2014 – 2017

Ambrolauri is the seat of the State Commissioner (or governor), representing Georgia's central government in the city of Ambrolauri and four other municipalities grouped together into the Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti region. Ambrolauri also houses the bodies of local self-government of the Ambrolauri Municipality, which is a separate self-governing community.

CultureEdit

Ambrolauri is home to the Museum of Fine Arts,[10] and a theatre. The environs of Ambrolauri are rich in historical monuments such as the churches of Barakoni and Nikortsminda. A recreational zone is being developed at Shaori Lake, south of Ambrolauri.[11]

TransportationEdit

Ambrolauri is served by an airport, opened in January 2017, which can serve small planes carrying 15–20 passengers. Its runway is 1.1 km long and a terminal of 600 square meters can serve about 50 people at a time.[12]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Main Results of the 2014 Census (Publication)" (PDF). Census.ge, National Statistics Office of Georgia (Geostat) (in Georgian). 2016-04-28. pp. 207–208. Retrieved 2022-03-24.
  2. ^ a b "Population and Demography - Population by cities and boroughs (daba), as of 1 January". National Statistics Office of Georgia, Geostat. 2021-01-01. Retrieved 2022-03-24.
  3. ^ a b "Definition of "Ambrolauri"". Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd edition 1969–1978 (in Russian). Retrieved 2022-03-24.
  4. ^ a b Gamkrelidze, Gela; et al., eds. (2013). "ამბროლაური (Ambrolauri)". ქართლის ცხოვრების ტოპოარქეოლოგიური ლექსიკონი [A Topoarchaeological dictionary of Kartlis tskhovreba (The history of Georgia)] (PDF) (in Georgian) (1st ed.). Tbilisi: Center of Archaeology, National Museum of Georgia. p. 30. ISBN 978-9941-15-896-4.
  5. ^ Pospelov, Yevgeny (1993). Имена городов: вчера и сегодня (1917–1992). Топонимический словарь [City Names: Yesterday and Today (1917–1992). Toponymic Dictionary] (in Russian). Moscow: Russkiye slovari. p. 27.
  6. ^ "Амбролаури [Ambrolauri]". Большая советская энциклопедия [Great Soviet Encyclopaedia] (in Russian) (3rd ed.). Moscow: Sovetskaya entsiklopediya. 1978.[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ "Final Results of the Election Day according to ISFED Data". International Society for Fair Elections and Democracy. 16 June 2014. Retrieved 9 July 2015.
  8. ^ a b "Civil.Ge | Parliament Reduces Number of Self-Governing Cities". old.civil.ge.
  9. ^ "World Meteorological Organization Climate Normals for 1981–2010". World Meteorological Organization. Archived from the original on 9 October 2021. Retrieved 9 October 2021.
  10. ^ "Ambrolauri Fine Art Museum". Georgian Museums. Ministry of Culture and Monuments Protection of Georgia, ICOM National Committee in Georgia, Georgian Museums Association, Culturological Research Association. Retrieved 9 July 2015.
  11. ^ "Moscow-based Georgian Businessman to Build a Hotel on the Shaori Lake". Caucasus Business Week. 14 April 2015. Archived from the original on 10 July 2015. Retrieved 9 July 2015.
  12. ^ "Georgia welcomes airport in western Racha region". Agenda.ge. 14 January 2017. Retrieved 14 January 2017.

External linksEdit