University of Central Asia Launches Phase I Construction of Naryn Campus

Date: 27 September 2013
Other languages: Русский язык |

The University of Central Asia (UCA) announced the official start of Phase I of its main campus construction in Naryn, Kyrgyz Republic at a media briefing on 27 September 2013. Held at UCA’s Naryn Town Campus, the event was attended by the Vice-Governor and Vice-Mayor of Naryn Oblast, UCA contractors, as well as local and regional media.

At the event, UCA Director General Dr Bohdan Krawchenko provided an overview of the University’s academic programmes, campus plans and expectations for student life.

In her remarks, Ms Chinara Abdraimakunova, Vice-Governor of Naryn Oblast, emphasised the importance of Naryn’s partnerships with UCA and AKDN, “The government is pleased to acknowledge the Aga Khan Development Network’s economic impact on the Naryn community. The University of Central Asia has 180 young people working on its campus construction and we look forward to more economic opportunities. Additionally, there is an increase in intellectual stimulation in our area, due to the UCA School of Professional and Continuing Education.”


Vice-Governor of Naryn Oblast, Ms Chinara Abdraimakunova addressed the media and emphasised the importance of the partnership between Naryn and UCA.

The briefing was followed by a walk-through of the main Naryn campus area which was presented to UCA by the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic. An exhibition of the campus design and architecture was also on display.


Campus Design and Development
The UCA campus master plan and concept design were conceived by the award-winning architecture firm Arata Isozaki & Associates, while the detailed design and construction documentation were prepared by AECOM UK. 

Phase I construction of the Naryn campus began in September 2013,  and involves preparing the site and building enabling infrastructure, such as utility supplies, internal roads, parking and site offices. Facilities for staff, including a restaurant and medical facilities, are also being built. Considerable investments have been made in construction materials and equipment.

In early 2014, AECOM will complete the detailed design of the campus and UCA will employ a series of contractors. The structural sub-contractor will begin, building individual concrete structures to house the 12,200 square metre (m²) Phase I campus facility. The facility will include an academic block, housing a library, classrooms, laboratories, a dining hall and faculty housing, and student dormitory buildings.

Year-round construction will facilitate the completion of the facility in the spring of 2016, followed by a testing and commissioning period. In September 2016, the Naryn campus will open its doors to the University’s first class of 30 undergraduate students. 


UCA Director General Dr Bohdan Krawchenko sharing academic and campus plans with media from the Kyrgyz Republic and Tajikistan.

“In three years, this campus site will house our academic and residential facilities and the campus will be a hub of intellectual activity. Our first cohort of students will make history as UCA’s class of 2021,” commented Dr Krawchenko, as he led guests around the campus site.

Opportunities for Employment and Contractors 

In 2013, UCA awarded six works packages to Naryn construction companies to perform the preparatory works. Employment for ongoing construction will be facilitated through a series of contractors who will be contractually obligated to employ minimum levels of local and Kyrgyz staff.

Mrs Nurjehan Mawani, Head of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) Representation in the Kyrgyz Republic, stated,“This stage of UCA’s evolution will create new economic opportunities for Naryn residents, and will further catalyse the development efforts of AKDN agencies working in Naryn Oblast to improve living standards.”

Construction initiatives on the Naryn site employed 180 local staff in September 2013. It is estimated that employment figures will increase to 200 local staff in October. In early 2014, between 20 and 30 total works packages will be further procured by UCA, with the majority being tendered to Kyrgyz contractors.  


Grant Robertson, UCA Director of Construction, discussing campus development at a panorama point overlooking the campus site.

Site Preparation and Community Development
To prepare the site for construction, UCA has established nurseries and planted 60,000 trees, plants and shrubs which will be replanted around the campus site. Using stone sourced from the Naryn River, UCA constructed over 2.4 kilometres (km) of green and gabion wall, securing campus boundaries and stabilising the Naryn River bank. High voltage power lines were diverted when a portion of the Naryn State Road was routed off the campus site, and telecommunication lines were diverted onto the site.


UCA has also engaged in construction to improve the quality of life of communities around the campus site. A secure 24 hour water supply was provided to Tosh Bulak village. A 2.4 km portion of the diverted Naryn State Road was completed, with a pedestrian footpath, street trees and lighting, and presented to the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic. UCA also developed the 2,300 m² public Naryn Central Park, adjacent to its Naryn Town Campus.

Town Campus and International Standard Sports Facilities
The UCA Town Campus has already established UCA as a presence in the Naryn region. The 3,000 m² building houses UCA’s School of Professional and Continuing Education, and is equipped with state-of-the-art learning technologies, two computer laboratories, four classrooms and a 7,476-volume library. The School is a leading provider of adult and continuing education, reaching over 13,500 learners in the Kyrgyz Republic.

In 2012, UCA opened its first public facilities at the Naryn campus site; international standard sports facilities, including a football pitch and tennis courts. These were physically built by residents of Naryn Town and Tosh Bulak village and managed by UCA’s construction team. These facilities will serve the Naryn community and future UCA students.

Cultural Preservation
Reflecting its commitment to cultural preservation, UCA supported an archeological excavation on the Naryn campus site in 2012 and 2013. Led by Kubat Tabaldiev, professor at Kyrgyz -Turkish Manas University, and executed with permission from the Kyrgyz Ministry of Culture, the excavation revealed 45 ancient internment sites, other structures and artifacts spanning the Stone, Bronze, early Iron and Middle ages. All artifacts have been transferred to Bishkek for further study.

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