30.01.2018 | 14:00-15:00 | CENTRE FOR RESEARCH ARCHITECTURE
‘ANAKLIA DEEP SEA PORT AND THE LOGISTICS OF TRIAL AND ERROR ON THE BLACK SEA’
The coastal village of Anaklia on the Black Sea has, throughout the past decade, been at the centre of ambitious national and foreign investment aimed at turning this borderland into a trade and transport hub with a global reach. The latest is a deep sea port which will be completed in 2020. With an initial investment of 590 million dollars, the port is intended to become one of the strategic nodes of the ‘New Silk Road’. Behind the construction of Anaklia’s port lies an interplay of spatial imaginations. As Abkhazia’s immediate neighbour, the port is 300km west of Tbilisi, the political and cultural centre of the country. Despite its peripheral position, however, Anaklia occupies a central place in national imaginations. The current development rises on the ashes of a mega project which never saw completion: Lazika the futuristic city planned by Saakshvili and halted in 2012 as a result of the former president’s failure to renew his mandate. Drawing on ethnographic material I will reflect on the fate of Anaklia starting from what has been left behind, traces, ruins and the landscapes of trial and error which compose the places’ current topography.
EG is a PhD student in the the Department of Geography at University College London (UCL). Her research focuses on the intersections between infrastructural development, geopolitical discourses and labour struggles. Her current fieldwork takes place across three emerging logistics hubs in the Republic of Georgia.