S-1 (Georgia)

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S1

საერთაშორისო 1
Tbilisi-Senaki-Leselidze
Tbilisi-Senaki-Leselidze Hwy near Otarsheni.jpg
S1 highway between Tbilisi and Gori
Route information
Part of Tabliczka E60.svgTabliczka E97.svgTabliczka E117.svg and Tabliczka AH5.svgTabliczka AH81.svgTabliczka AH82.svg
Part of  
Length542.7 km[1] (337.2 mi)
Actual length 537 km (334 mi)
Major junctions
East endTbilisi
Major intersections(km)

  20 S9-GE.svg S9 (Tabliczka E60.svg Tabliczka AH5.svg Tabliczka AH81.svg)

  27 S3-GE.svg S3 (Tabliczka E117.svg Tabliczka AH81.svg)

  83 S10-GE.svg S10

120 S8-GE.svg S8 (Tabliczka AH82.svg)

227 SH104-GE.svg Sh104 (Kutaisi)

257 S12-GE.svg S12 (Tabliczka E692.svg)

291 S2-GE.svg S2 (Tabliczka E60.svg Tabliczka E97.svg Tabliczka AH5.svg)

339 Roadblock Abkhazia, closed for cars
West endRussian border
Russia A147-RUS.svg
Location
Georgia
MunicipalitiesTbilisi, Mtskheta, Kaspi, Gori, Kareli, Khashuri, Kharagauli, Zestafoni, Terjola, Tsqaltubo, Samtredia, Abasha, Senaki, Khobi, Zugdidi, Gali, Ochamchire, Gulripshi, Sokhumi, Gudauta, Gagra
Major citiesTbilisi, Gori, Kutaisi, Zugdidi, Sokhumi
Highway system
  • Roads in Georgia

The Georgian S1 route (Georgian: ს1, also known as Tbilisi-Senaki-Leselidze), is a "road of international importance" with a registered length of 542.7 kilometers (337.2 mi) within the Georgian classification system, which makes it the longest Georgian highway route.[1] It runs from Tbilisi via Mtskheta, Gori, Khashuri, Zestaponi, Kutaisi, Samtredia, Senaki, Zugdidi, Sukhumi and Gagra to the border with Russia near Leselidze at the northwestern tip of the country, covering in practice 537 kilometers (334 mi). After crossing the Georgia–Russia border in breakaway Abkhazia, the highway continues to Sochi and Krasnodar as A147. It is part of European E60, E97 and E117 routes and Asian Highways AH5, AH81 and AH82, and connects with six other S-routes.

North of Zugdidi, across the Enguri River which is the disputed Abkhazia–Georgia border, the remaining 198 kilometers (123 mi) of the S1 route through breakaway Abkhazia is not under central Georgian control. Crossing into Abkhazia from Georgian controlled territory (and vice versa) is not possible by car, only by foot via the Enguri Bridge [ru] which is part of the S1 route. The road reaches its highest point of 910 m (2,990 ft) above sea level at the southern portal of the Rikoti Tunnel, which opened in 1982. This is the longest vehicular tunnel entirely within Georgia and has a length of 1,722 m (1.070 mi).

While the majority of the S1 highway is a two-lane road, major parts have been rebuilt since 2006 as 2x2 motorway/expressway, specifically Tbilisi to Surami (105 km (65 mi)) and Zestaponi (Argveta) to Samtredia (57 km (35 mi)). The redesign of the trunk section of the S1 between Tbilisi and Samtredia to motorway or expressway standards is part of the East-West Highway project, a major investment into Georgia's international road connectivity.[2] As of 2021 the mountainous 51 km (32 mi) "Rikoti Pass Road" and the remaining 6 km (3.7 mi) of the Khashuri Bypass are under construction as 2x2 expressway and are expected to be completed by 2023.[3]

Background

Soviet M27 Tbilisi-Gori near Natakhtari in early 1980s Georgian SSR. Note the three scripts on the signs. Nowadays it is Georgian and Latin

In the 1980s the current S1 route was entirely part of the Soviet M27 highway route that ran from Baku via Tbilisi to Novorossiysk. The Russian part of that M27 existed until 2018 when it got renumbered as A147 highway. Prior to the 1980s, the route of the current S1 was composed of the 17 (Tbilisi to Samtredia) and the 19 (Samtredia to Leselidze) highways.

After Georgia regained independence in 1991, the M27 designation was maintained until 1996 when the current route numbering system was adopted. In the 1996 ordinance "Indicators and List for Determination of International, Domestic and Local Roads of Georgia" the S1 route was recorded as the "S1 Tbilisi - Senaki - Leselidze (Russian border)" with an original length of 552 kilometers (343 mi).[4] Since, the route has been shortened by 15 kilometers (9.3 mi) to 537 kilometers (334 mi) due to realignment of the road.

The S1 has been a two lane highway prior to the inception of the East-West Highway project in 2005, with the exception of Tbilisi city and the subsequent 11 km (6.8 mi) along Mtskheta to the S3 junction near Natakhtari which have been multilane since earlier years. In the 1980s expansion of the (then M27) highway to four lanes was envisioned and ground works had already started until Igoeti when the Soviet Union collapsed and Georgia became independent. This and the turbulent 1990s in Georgia interrupted these plans, which were picked up again after the 2003 Rose Revolution.[5] Around 2004 the junction with the S3 highway near Natakhtari was upgraded with grade-separation.

East-West Highway

In 2011 the Gori Tunnel (800m) opened
The Agara Bypass was completed in 2015, while the old S1 on the left side was renumbered Sh203
Initially the Kutaisi Bypass was completed as two lane grade separated highway

Since 2006 more than 160 kilometers (99 mi) of the S1 highway has been realigned and upgraded to expressway or motorway standards within the internationally sponsored East-West Highway project which was initiated in 2005. This ambitious long term project aims to create a 455 kilometers (283 mi) east-west transport corridor through Georgia and connecting Azerbaijan and Armenia with Turkey by upgrading Georgian sections of the E60 (Poti-Tbilisi-Red Bridge, Azerbaijan) and E70 (Poti-Batumi-Sarpi, Turkey) highways to strengthen Georgia's position as South Caucasus transport hub.[6] The East-West Highway project includes redesign of major sections of the Georgian S1, S2, S4, S12 and more recently the S7 highway,[7] to grade-separated highways, mostly as 2x2 expressway.

The majority of the East-West Highway has been planned as 2x2 expressway, in some cases the upgrades have been implemented as grade-separated two lane highway with median separation and hard shoulders (reminiscent of a super-two), such as the S2 Kobuleti and Batumi Bypasses. The S1 Kutaisi Bypass was initially constructed as a grade-separated wide two lane highway with hard shoulders, but was doubled to a 2x2 motorway a few years later. While most of the involved sections of the S1 have been completely redesigned and rerouted with bypasses of cities and towns, the 53 kilometers (33 mi) Natakhtari to Gori/Sveneti section follows the original route and has been doubled between 2006 and 2009 by constructing an additional parallel two-lane road (and rehabilitation of the old road before becoming operational as 2x2). The 15 kilometers (9.3 mi) northern bypass of Gori (Sveneti - Ruisi) was the first real test of the project during 2009-2011, with two new parallel 880 meter viaducts and two parallel tunnels of 800 meter in one project divided over three tenders. The short but fierce 2008 Russo-Georgian War had a temporary effect on the project, and construction quickly picked up in 2009.

Despite earlier political promises the East-West Highway would be finished by 2020,[8] the construction of crucial sections is still ongoing (as of 2021) until at least 2024, with remaining sections of the S1 to be completed by 2023.[3] The project is sponsored by both European and Asian development banks, the World Bank, European Union and others, giving credits amounting to more than $2 billion for the S1 upgrades alone (with additional state funding). Construction companies from various European and Asian countries have been involved, with mixed success. Some tenders ran into technical and legal issues, with some contracts having been terminated by the Georgian government due to excessive underperformance of the contracted party, resulting in multiple year delays on various lots.[9][10]

For the S1 highway the (E60/E70) East-West Highway project is scoped to the 250 kilometers (160 mi) Tbilisi - Samtredia section. The project envisions to upgrade the S1 to (2x2) expressway/motorway standards until Samtredia, where the S12 will continue as (2x2) motorway in the direction of Batumi. As it stands, the S1 between Samtredia and Senaki will remain a two lane highway with no major redesigns scheduled as of 2021. The focus of the East-West Highway upgrades in the western part lies in the shorter route to Batumi via a completely redesigned S12. By 2021, over 160 kilometers (99 mi) of the S1 between Natakhtari and Samtredia has been upgraded to 2x2 motorway standards, with the remaining additional 58 kilometers (36 mi) being under construction.

Below a detailed overview of S1 sections that have been or are being upgraded to 2x2 expressway/motorway configuration within the East-West Highway project, in consecutive order from East (Tbilisi) to West.

Segment Lot Length Funding Contractor Start
Construction
Finished
or opened
Remarks
Natakhtari - Aghaiani[note 1] 16 km State budget
($40 mln)[11]
Caucasus Road Project (GE)
ZIMO LLC (GE)
Mar 2006 Oct 2006[12] Eastbound lane opened in bidirectional mode
Dec 2007[13] Westbound lane opened in 2x2 mode.
Aghaiani - Igoeti[note 1] 12 km World Bank via IDA
($19 mln)
Caucasus Road Project (GE)
ZIMO LLC (GE)
Jun 2007 Nov 2008 Igoeti bypass viaducts completed in 2011
Igoeti - Sveneti 25 km World Bank via IDA
($55 mln)
Ashtrom Group Ltd (IL) 2008[14] Jun 2009[15] Eastbound lane opened in bidirectional mode
Nov 2009[16] Westbound lane opened in 2x2 mode
Sveneti - Ruisi Lot-1 80-85km 5 km World Bank via IBRD
($147 mln)[17]
State budget $37 mln
Akkord (AZ) Jul 2009[18] Oct 2010[19]
Lot-2 85-86km 1 km Akkord (AZ) Nov 2011[20] Liakhvi River Viaduct (2x 877 m)
Lot-3 86-95km 9 km Todini Costruzioni (IT) Nov 2011[21] Including Gori Tunnels (2x 800 m)
Ruisi - Agara (Mokhisi) 19 km World Bank via IDA
($43 mln)[17]
China Nuclear Industry
23 Construction Co (CN)
Aug 2012 Dec 2015[22]
Agara (Mokhisi) - Zemo Osiauri Lot-1 Gomi Bypass 7 km World Bank
via IDA & IBRD
($55 mln)
Copri Construction (KW)
Black Sea Group (GE)
Feb 2015[23] Jun 2016[24]
Lot-2 Agarebi - Zemo Osiauri 5 km Copri Construction (KW)
Black Sea Group (GE)
Nov 2017[25] Opened for traffic on 22 Aug 2020 together with connecting Khashuri Bypass (Lot-1)
Zemo Osiauri - Chumateteli
(Rikoti Tunnel East portal)
Lot-1 Zemo Osiauri - Surami 8 km EIB
(€49.5 mln)
Sinohydro (CN) Sept 2017 Aug 2020[26] Lot-1 was put in operation together with the above Lot-2 Agara - Zemo Osiauri (13 km in total). On 8 October 2020 the 2nd bridge across the Surami-Tsotskhnara road was opened.[27]
Lot-2 Surami - Chumateteli 6 km World Bank via IBRD
($140 mln)
Astaldi (IT, 2017)[28]
Sinohydro (2020)[29]
By 2019 the contract with Astaldi was terminated,[30] which led to an arbitration case.[31] Sinohydro won a renewed tender procedure in 2020. Construction resumed in 2021, to be completed by March 2023.
Rikoti Pass Tunnel renovation 2 km World Bank via IBRD
($28 mln)
State budget $7 mln
Sinohydro (CN) Jul 2010 Nov 2011[32] Including renovation of 4km Tunnel Bypass road (Sh56)
Rikoti Pass road[33]
(Chumateleti-Argveta)
F1 Chumateleti-Khevi 12 km World Bank via IBRD
($160 mln)
EIB (€76 mln)
State budget $44 mln
CSCEC (CN) Oct 2019[34] Includes 22 bridges and 3 tunnels
Second parallel Rikoti Tunnel (1800m)
F2 Khevi-Ubisa 12 km ADB ($300 mln)[35]
World Bank ($140 mln)
State budget $130 mln
Hunan Road & Bridge
Construction Group (CN)
May 2019[36] Includes 35 bridges and 20 tunnels
F3 Ubisa-Shorapani 13 km EIB (€332 mln)
State budget €20 mln
CRBC (CN) May 2019[36] Includes 27 bridges and 18 tunnels
F4 Shorapani-Argveta 15 km ADB ($278 mln)[37]
State budget $89 mln
Guizhou Highway
Engineering Group (CN)
April 2021 Includes 14 bridges and 12 tunnels. Initially to be financed by Japanese JICA. Contractor was signed in Jan 2020, work began in spring 2021
Argveta - Samtredia[38] Lot-3 Argveta-Nakhshirghele
(Argveta-Kutaisi Bypass)
15 km JICA ($212 mln) Takenaka (JP) and
Todini Costruzioni (IT)
Jun 2013[9] Jun 2017[39] Argveta to Nakhshirghele (2x2 lanes)
Lot-1 Nakhshirghele-Ukaneti
(Kutaisi Bypass)
17 km Feb 2012[40] Nov 2014[41] Initially built as 2 lane road. Opening in 2014 together with 15 km of Lot-2 until exit at Bashi. In 2018 a combined project of lots 1 and 2 was initiated to double highway to 2x2.[42]
Lot-2 Ukaneti-Samtredia
(Kutaisi bypass-Samtredia)
24 km Nov 2012 Jul 2016[43] Initially built as 2 lane highway, opening in 2016 of remaining 9 km Bashi - Samtredia.
Lot-1 + Lot-2 second track
Nakhshirghele-Samtredia
41 km State budget $73 mln Black Sea Group (GE, 3 lots)
Akkord (AZ, 1 lot)
May 2019[44] Dec 2020[45] Doubled original lots 1 & 2 to 2x2 motorway with parallel road on south side.
1.000 km = 0.621 mi
  •       Under construction
  •      Construction suspended

Route

The Georgian "Law on motor roads" stipulates that the reference point for the mileage of roads leaving Tbilisi is Freedom Square.[46] This means Freedom Square is the reference point of the S1 mileage reflected in the tables below (and the kilometer posts along the road) while not necessarily its actual starting point, which is a bit harder to determine precisely. The speed limit on motorway sections is 110 km/h (70 mph) and 90 km/h (55 mph) on highway sections, with the exception of passage through towns and villages (60 km/h (35 mph), may vary locally) and within the Tbilisi city limits (60 to 80 km/h or 35 to 50 mph).

Tbilisi — Khashuri

S1 highway through Tbilisi along Dighomi district
S1 Natakhtari - Mtskheta (old style S-1 indication)

Starting in Tbilisi the S1 runs north along the right bank of the Kura (Mtkvari) river in a 2x3 lane configuration with a speed limit of 60 km/h (37 mph). As central city thoroughfare this is a crowded section, with jamming on parts throughout the day. After passing the Saburtalo neighbourhood on the left hand side, the road diverts from the river bank with a wide median and 2x4 lanes. The speed limit is 80 km/h (50 mph) here. Along the Dighomi neighbourhood the median is used for U-turn points. After passing the Tbilisi Mall at the northern tip of the city and the tight left turn to Mtskheta, the road leaves the city of Tbilisi and becomes a 2x2 expressway/motorway.

The road crosses the Kura river and passes Mtskheta, the capital of the Georgian historic Kingdom of Iberia, and Jvari Monastery, the site of Georgia's 4th century Christian conversion. The highway follows the Aragvi River for a few kilometers and after the junction with the S3 highway to Kazbegi and Russia the road turns West. From this point westward the highway has been gradually upgraded to 2x2 since 2006 within the ambitious and prestigious East-West Highway project with a predominantly concrete road surface. At the rise at Igoeti two viaducts have been constructed in recent years to bypass the village, river and regional roads, after which the highway continues through an agricultural valley with a mountain ridge on the left hand side and the foothills of the South Ossetia/Tskhinvali breakaway region on the right. At Nadarbazevi village the highway runs only a few hundred meters away from the de facto administrative boundary line of the breakaway region.

Reaching the city of Gori the highway crosses the S10 highway which goes to Russia via South Ossetia through the Roki Tunnel. While Tskhinvali, the administrative capital of South Ossetia, is signposted it cannot be reached via the S10. After the Gori exit, the S1 highway crosses the Liakhvi river via an 880 m (0.55 mi) long viaduct, and then climbs to 770 m (2,530 ft) to the 800 m (0.50 mi) long Gori tunnel through a minor ridge on the West bank of the Liakhvi river. On either side of the twin-tube tunnel large highway service stations have opened in 2011, a premiere for Georgia at the time. After the tunnel the highway navigates down to meet the Kura river again, and follows it in a flat landscape until Khashuri. Various bypass sections have been constructed here in recent years. Near Khashuri the climb to the Likhi Range and the Rikoti Tunnel begins via a new bypass through the hills on the east side of Khashuri.

Khashuri — Samtredia

North entrance of Rikoti Tunnel, the longest vehicular tunnel within Georgia
Typical part of S1 between Surami and Zestaponi through Likhi mountains

East of Khashuri town the highway quickly climbs into the Likhi Range to the Rikoti Tunnel via a new bypass. The bypass temporarily ends at Surami where the highway joins the old S1 two lane road until the construction of the 2nd section of the Khashuri Bypass will be finished. Construction has been suspended for a few years due to contractual issues but should resume by 2021 with a new constructor. The old S1 route through Khashuri and Surami is still important for through traffic to the S8 highway for touristic Borjomi and Turkey and Armenia. Shortly after Surami the S1 highway reaches its highest point of 910 m (2,990 ft) above sea level at the southern portal of the Rikoti Tunnel which cuts through the Rikoti Pass.

The pass itself is only slightly higher at 996 m (3,268 ft) and the old road across the pass serves as tunnel bypass road in case of incidents or maintenance. The Rikoti Tunnel was originally opened in 1982, extensively rehabilitated in 2010-11 and is the longest vehicular tunnel entirely in Georgia with a length of 1,722 m (1.070 mi). The 1984 Roki Tunnel at the end of the S10 highway is longer (3,730 m (2.32 mi)), but is shared with Russia while the Georgian section is not under control of Georgian authorities as it is located in breakaway South Ossetia region. In October 2020 construction of a parallel Rikoti Tunnel tube started, which will have a length of 1,800 m (1.1 mi).[47]

From here the highway navigates downhill to Zestaponi following the Rikotula, Dzirula and Kvirila rivers. The Likhi Range separates East and West Georgia and is a geographic connection between the Greater Caucasus range in the north and the Lesser Caucasus range in the south. While the highest parts of the Likhi mountains exceed 2,000 m (6,600 ft) in altitude, the area around the S1 highway does not exceed the 1,000 m (3,300 ft) with the exception of the eastern flank near the Rikoti Pass which is slightly higher. The 50 km to Zestaponi is a curvy 2 lane highway route through lush and thickly forested river gorges with little opportunity to safely pass slower vehicles while running through villages and settlements. In the eastern (Tbilisi) direction, the road has a 4 km (2.5 mi) passing lane (2+1) for the uphill climb to the Rikoti Tunnel. Overall the practical speed is limited on this section. A completely new 52 km (32 mi) 2x2 expressway/motorway is under construction from the Rikoti Tunnel to Zestaponi/Argveta as part of the East-West Highway project with 96 tunnels and 53 bridges to be completed by 2024.[33] This will reduce travel time significantly on this section.

West of Zestaponi, at Argveta, the S1 continues as a 2x2 motorway/expressway and enters the West-Georgian Colchis Plain by following the Kvirila river to Kutaisi, Georgia's 3rd largest city and home to the nation's second airport (David the Builder) which serves as tourist and low-cost carrier gateway. Near Kutaisi a completely new 41 km long bypass to Samtredia has been built. It first opened as two-lane highway in 2014, and by the end of 2020 as 2x2 motorway. At Samtredia the S1 highway connects with the S12 highway and runs through the town. From here the S1 continues to Senaki as two-lane highway. A new S12 2x2 motorway is under construction which will effectively be a continuation of the S1 motorway section. When completed, the S1 will continue via the Samtredia exit and pass over the current S12 with a viaduct.

Samtredia — Zugdidi / Enguri Bridge

At Samtredia the S1 leaves the 2x2 motorway, transfers through the town via a 1 km overlap with the S12 highway and continues to Senaki as two-lane highway. The road then passes through a string of towns and villages. A few kilometers West of Senaki the S2 highway branches of the S1 highway to the Black Sea port of Poti, which is also the destination of the E60 route. The S1 highway continues its route through the Colchis Plain with a string of villages and settlements and eventually reaches the city of Zugdidi. The highway runs as a straight line into the center of the city, to its Tavisupleba (Freedom) Square. From here the highway runs anti-clockwise around the local Botanical garden, and after crossing the Chkhousi River the road heads straight towards Abkhazia. About a kilometer before the Enguri Bridge [ru], a Georgian police post is effectively the end for most (car) travellers on the S1, as travel into Abkhazia is restricted (by the Abkhazian side) and cars are not allowed to pass through the Abkhaz checkpoint.

Enguri Bridge — Leselidze

Roadblock at Enguri Bridge [ru]. Regular cars are not allowed to pass.
Road signs in Abkhazia are in Abkhazian, Russian and Latin script
1932 landmark bridge across Gumista River, north of Abkhazia's capital Sokhumi
Series of hairpin bends above Narinjovani
South entrance of Gagra Bypass Tunnels
Abkhazian checkpoint

On the west side of the Enguri Bridge there is an Abkhaz checkpoint, after which the highway continues to Gali, the center of the Georgian community in Abkhazia. North from Gali the road crosses the discharge channel of the Enguri Dam Hydropower Cascade. From here the road continues in northwestern direction through the lush lowlands of southern Abkhazia, bypasses Ochamchire town and only near Sokhumi the foothills of the Caucasus Mountains push the road closer to the coast. At Tkhubuni village, 421 kilometers (262 mi) from Tbilisi and the southern terminus of the Sokhumi trolleybus, the Black Sea coast is finally reached. The highway then skirts the beaches and enters Sokhumi, the capital and main city of Abkhazia. The entire Abkhazian section of the S1 highway is a simple two lane road.

The route makes its way through the center of Sokhumi, passes the once famous Botanical Garden, Monkey Nursery and Railway station before making its way out to the north, towards the Gumista River. About five kilometers north of the city, the road crosses the Gumista River via a landmark bridge. The 170 meter long bridge with three arches rises high above the river and was built in 1932. It was the site of a fierce Abkhaz offensive towards Sokhumi against the Georgian army during the 1992-1993 civil war, taking the lives of at least 222 Abkhaz combatants.[48] Plans to build a new bridge were unfolded in 2016,[49] but in 2021 it appeared no compatible designs and other construction estimations were produced by the company that was paid in advance.[50]

The highway continues west skirting the foothills of the Caucasus Mountains, and after reaching its highest point in the Abkhazian section descends back to the coast via a couple of hairpin bends. After passing the town of Gudauta, host of a Russian military base, the road turns inland circumventing the Bichvinta-Miuseri Strict Nature Reserve, Pitsunda Bay and the resort town the bay was named after. At Gagra the road goes through a tunneled bypass which was constructed in the 1980s to relieve the resort town growing transit traffic. The bypass consists of two tunnels of 1200 and 800 meters and was originally planned as 4 tunnels. The 3rd tunnel was under construction when the Soviet Union collapsed and construction was aborted. It was cut for 1300 meter from the south end and 300 meter from the north. A fourth tunnel was envisioned as well, but construction never started. The incomplete 3rd tunnel is now a favorite among urbexers. During the Abkhazian-Georgian civil war the bridge between the first and second tunnel was blown up, effectively disabling the bypass. In 2013 the (short) bridge was rebuilt, and both tunnels were rehabilitated and have been reopened for traffic since.

The Georgian S1 route reaches its end after 537 kilometers (334 mi) at the Psou River crossing which is the border with the Russian Federation at Leselidze (Gyachrypsh). Traffic passes through an Abkhazian controlled checkpoint before reaching the Russian border control and the Russian A147 highway across the river.

Intersections

RegionMunicipalitykmmi DestinationsRouteNotes
City of Tbilisi00.0Tabliczka E117.svgSouth end E117 overlap
127.5ExitDidi Digomi, Tbilisi
169.9ExitZahesiTransfer to S9 highway, no Eastbound entrance
1711ExitJvari MonasteryEastbound exit and entrance only
1811Tbilisi city limits
Mtskheta-MtianetiMtskheta18.511.5ExitMukhatgverdiWestbound exit and entrance only
1912ExitMtskhetaSH29-GE.svg
MotorwayMotorway section (2x2) Font Awesome 5 solid arrow-down.svg
19.512.1Crosses Kura River (360 m)
2012InterchangeJvari Monastery (via შ 152)
Tsiteli Khidi (Red Bridge) / Yerevan
S9-GE.svg  Tabliczka E60.svgTabliczka AH5.svgTabliczka AH81.svg"Tbilisi Bypass", through traffic to Azerbaijan and Armenia.
East end E60/AH81, South end AH5 overlap
2314ExitTsitsamuri
2415ExitSaguramoSH149-GE.svgFinland road sign G28.svg Zedazeni Monastery signposted
2516Crosses Aragvi River (390 m)
2616ExitMtskhetaSH64-GE.svgEastbound exit and entrance only
2717InterchangeGudauri / Stepantsminda / VladikavkazS3-GE.svg  Tabliczka E117.svgTabliczka AH81.svgHighway to Russia border via Kazbegi / Darial Gorge.
North end E117 / AH81 overlap
2918ExitTserovani IDP Refugee CampExits only
3220ExitGorovani / TserovaniWine route Wineroute signposted
3924InterchangeAkhalgori / KsaniSH28-GE.svgFinland road sign G28.svg Ksani Fortress and Wine route wineroute signposted
4125Crosses Ksani River (240 m, region boundary)
Shida KartliKaspi4226ExitAgaiani
4528ExitTsikhisdziriEastbound exit and entrance only
4729ExitFermaWestbound exit and entrance only
5132ExitOkami
55.434.4ExitSamtavisiSH62-GE.svg SH63-GE.svgNo eastbound exit
55.634.5Igoeti Viaduct (220 m)
56.335.0ExitSamtavisiSH133-GE.svgWestbound exit only
56.535.1Crosses Lekhura River (420 m)
5735ExitKaspi / Samtavisi / LamiskanaSH133-GE.svgEastbound exit only
5937ExitGamdlistskaro / Zemo Rene
6440ExitNigoza / Kodistskaro
Gori6742ExitKhurvaleti / Nadarbazevi
7144ExitShavshebi / Tsitelubani
7345ExitShavshebiEastbound exit only
7547ExitAkhalsopeli / Akhalsheni
7949ExitSveneti
8050ExitGori / Mejvrishevi / UplistsikheSH60-GE.svgFinland road sign G28.svg Uplistsikhe cave ruins signposted
8050Crosses Tortla River
8150ExitMejvrisheviSH138-GE.svgEastbound exit and entrance
8251Crosses Mejuda River
8352ExitGori / TskhinvaliS10-GE.svgHighway to Russia border via Roki Tunnel.
Roadblock after Ergneti: access South Ossetia prohibited.
8452Crosses Liakhvi River (880 m)
8653Wissol Service station – Westbound only. EV Charging, (Fast) Food, Supermarket
Kareli8754Gori Tunnel (780 m)
8855ExitOtarsheniSH202-GE.svgEastbound only, Gori Tunnel Bypass road
9056SOCAR Service station – Eastbound only. EV Charging, (Fast) Food, Supermarket
9458ExitRuisi / UrbnisiSH136-GE.svg
9760ExitRuisi / BebnisiSH135-GE.svg
10163ExitKareli / SagolasheniSH59-GE.svg SH198-GE.svg SH203-GE.svg
10364Crosses Prone River (280 m)
10565ExitKvenatkotsa / AgaraSH203-GE.svgWestbound exit, eastbound entrance
11471ExitGomi / SachkhereSH203-GE.svg
Shida KartliKhashuri12075ExitAgarebi
Khashuri / Borjomi
SH203-GE.svg
Transfer through Khashuri to ს8 highway to Borjomi and Turkey
13282ExitSuramiS1-GE.svgAll traffic exits to old ს1 2-lane highway.
End of MotorwayMotorway section (2x2) Font Awesome 5 solid arrow-up.svg
13383Surami town limits
RoundaboutKhashuri / BorjomiTabliczka AH82.svgTransfer via Khashuri for ს8 to Borjomi and Turkey. East end AH82 overlap.
13685Left junctionPhonaSH55-GE.svg
13785Surami town limits
13986Left junctionRikoti Tunnel BypassSH56-GE.svgRikoti Tunnel Bypass Road
14087Rikoti Tunnel (1722 m, region boundary)
ImeretiKharagauli14489Left junctionRikoti Tunnel BypassSH56-GE.svgRikoti Tunnel Bypass Road
168104Left junctionUbisa / GhoreshaFinland road sign G28.svg Ubisa Monastery
Zestafoni180110Left junctionDzirulaSH55-GE.svg
187116Passes through Shorapani
189117Zestaponi town limits
192119Right junctionChiaturaSH22-GE.svg
195121Left junctionBaghdatiSH54-GE.svg
196122Zestaponi town limits
199124Left junctionArgvetaAt-grade junction: westbound exit, eastbound entrance
MotorwayMotorway section (2x2) Font Awesome 5 solid arrow-down.svg
ExitArgvetaGrade separated: eastbound exit, westbound entrance
200120Wissol Petroleum service station – Westbound only. EV Charging, (Fast) Food, Supermarket
200120ExitRodinauliEastbound exit/entrance only
201125Crosses the Kvirila River (100 m, municipality boundary)
Terjola202126ExitTerjolaSH19-GE.svg
203126ExitKhareba WineryWestbound only for public access Khareba Winery Khareba Winery
Rompetrol service station – Eastbound only. EV Charging, (Fast) Food, Supermarket
204127Crosses Chkhari River (100 m)
SOCAR service station – Eastbound only. EV Charging, (Fast) Food, Supermarket
205127ExitSiktarva
206128Crosses Dzevrula River (160 m)
206128ExitEtseri
209130ExitEtseri
210130Crosses Charchkhulisghele River (100 m)
211131ExitKveda Simoneti
215134ExitNakhshirgheleSH204-GE.svg
217135Crosses Chishura River (630m)
222138Crosses Tskaltsitela River (100 m, municipality boundary)
Baghdati223139Rioni Hydropower Plant Canal
223139ExitBaghdati / KutaisiSH14-GE.svg
224139Crosses Rioni River (850m, municipality boundary)
Tsqaltubo227141InterchangeGeguti / KutaisiSH104-GE.svg
231144ExitUkaneti / Mukhiani
235146ExitOpshkviti
Samtredia246153ExitBashi / AkhalsopeliSH104-GE.svg
252157ExitAkhalsopeliSH204-GE.svg
255158Crosses Ochopa River (330m)
257160ExitBatumi
Samtredia / Poti / Sokhumi
S12-GE.svg Tabliczka E692.svgHighway to Turkey via Grigoleti, Batumi, Sarpi
S12-GE.svg S1-GE.svgAll ს1 traffic transfers through Samtredia (via ს12). South end ს12 / E692 overlap
End of MotorwayMotorway section (2x2) Font Awesome 5 solid arrow-up.svg
258160RoundaboutSamtredia
Poti / Sokhumi
SH204-GE.svg
S12-GE.svg Tabliczka E692.svgNorth end ს12 / E692 overlap
258160Crosses Samtredia—Batumi railway line
261162Crosses Tskhenistskali River (120m, boundary Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti region
Samegrelo-Zemo SvanetiAbasha271168Right junctionMartviliSH4-GE.svg
272169Left junctionSujunaSH3-GE.svg
275171Crosses Abasha River (100m)
Senaki282175Crosses Tekhuri River (180m)
Senaki town limits
ExitNokalakeviSH5-GE.svg
286178Right junctionChkhorotskuSH6-GE.svg
287178Senaki town limits
288179Crosses Tsivi River (120m)
291181Left junctionPoti / BatumiS2-GE.svg  Tabliczka E60.svgTabliczka E97.svgTabliczka AH5.svgHighway to Turkey via Sarpi. West end E60 / AH5 overlap; East end E97 overlap
291181Crossing Senaki—Poti railway line
Khobi300190Right junctionZeniSH87-GE.svg
301187CrossingKhobi station Khobi trainstation / AkhalsopeliSH98-GE.svg
Crosses Khobistskhali (Khobi) River (150m)
Khobi town limits
302188Left junctionPoti / ChaladidiSH48-GE.svg
304189Khobi town limits
306190Crosses Munchia River
Zugdidi317197Crosses Jumi River (100 m)
326203Zugdidi city limits
CrossingAnaklia / SokhumiSH8-GE.svg SH88-GE.svg
330210Right junctionSH84-GE.svg
RoundaboutTsalenjikhaSH6-GE.svg
331206Crosses Chkhousi River (110 m)
332206Right junctionMestiaSH7-GE.svg
333207Zugdidi city limits
337209Crosses Rukhi River
338210Georgian police checkpoint to Enguri Bridge and Abkhazia.
340210Crosses Enguri River (600 m)
Abkhazia ARGali340210Abkhaz police checkpoint. Roadblock Closed for car passage.
343213Left junctionTagiloniSH185-GE.svg
349217Gali town (5 km)
354220Crosses Gali Reservoir Canal of the Enguri hydroelectric power station
364226Crosses Okumi River (150 m)
Ochamchire371231Left junctionOchamchire
375233Crosses Ghalidzga River (150 m)
376234CrossingOchamchire / TkvarcheliSH9-GE.svg
381237Crosses Mokvi River (150 m)
382237Right junctionMokviSH186-GE.svg
407253Crosses Kodori River (170 m), municipality boundary
Gulripshi414257Left junctionBabushara / Sokhumi AirportSH189-GE.svg
417259Gulripshi town (2 km)
420260Crosses Machara River
Right junctionMerkheuliSH10-GE.svg
421262Tkhubuni (beach)
423263Crosses Kelasuri River (140 m, municipality boundary)
Sokhumi426265Sokhumi city limits
429267CrossingEsheraSH188-GE.svg
436271Left junctionSH188-GE.svg
437272Sokhumi city limits
438272Crosses Gumista River (170 m)
Gudauta452281New Athos town limits
455283Right junctionNew Athos Monastery / Anacopia FortressSH191-GE.svgNew Athos Access road to major cultural heritage sites
456283New Athos town limits
466290Crosses Aapsta River (140 m, municipality boundary)
470290Gudauta town limits
472293Right junctionLykhnySH190-GE.svg
474295Gudauta town limits
478297Crosses Khipsta River (120 m)
479298Left junctionMyusseraSH50-GE.svg
493306Abkhazia police checkpoint
498309Crosses Bzipi River (390 m, municipality boundary)
Gagra499310Right junctionLake RitsaSH11-GE.svg
504313Left junctionPitsundaSH29-GE.svg
508316Left junctionGagraSH192-GE.svg
514319Gagra bypass tunnel (800 m + 1300 m)
516321Left junctionGagraSH192-GE.svg
529329Gantiadi town limits
532331Crosses Khashupse River (160 m)
532331Left junctionKheivaniSH193-GE.svg
534332Gantiadi town limits
536333Leselidze town limits
537334CrossingLeselidze SalmeSH193-GE.svg SH194-GE.svg
537334Abkhazia police checkpoint
Russia Russian border checkpoint. Road continues as A147-RUS.svgTabliczka E97.svg to Sochi and Novorossiysk

Notes

  1. ^ a b Construction of this section to four lanes was already envisioned in the 1980s under Soviet rule while some ground works were already started but were interrupted when Georgia became independent.[5]

References

  1. ^ a b "2022 List of highways of international and domestic importance" (in Georgian). The Legislative Herald of Georgia. 19 July 2022. Retrieved 22 August 2022.
  2. ^ "Georgia East-West Highway Improvement Program". World Bank. Retrieved 2021-07-10.
  3. ^ a b "Works are concurrently ongoing on 62 bridges and 39 tunnels at Rikoti Pass section". Roads Department of Georgia. 2021-04-02. Retrieved 2021-07-10.
  4. ^ "On Approval of Indicators and List for Determination of International, Domestic and Local Roads of Georgia". The Legislative Herald of Georgia (in Georgian). 1996-12-16. Retrieved 2021-08-04.
  5. ^ a b "PID East-West Highway Improvement - Phase 1" (PDF). World Bank. 2006-11-30. p. 5, footnote 6. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  6. ^ "Road Sector of Georgia Overview - Presentation at 10th Eastern partnership transport panel" (PDF). Roads Department of Georgia. 2015-05-11. Retrieved 2021-08-13.
  7. ^ "Team Europe: EIB provides €106.7 million to Georgia for major upgrades of its East-West highway". European External Action Service. 2021-07-01. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  8. ^ "Construction of the east-west highway will be completed before 2020". GRASS FactCheck. 2018-05-23. Retrieved 2021-08-06.
  9. ^ a b "Zestaponi-Kutaisi road construction company changed twice, the road is not finished yet". GRASS FactCheck (in Georgian). 2016-11-21. Retrieved 2021-08-11.
  10. ^ "Road projects are stalled. Construction completion deadlines are violated and delayed for months or years". GRASS FactCheck. 2019-01-08. Retrieved 2021-08-13.
  11. ^ "On Reconstruction-Modernization (Construction) Measures of 27-43 km (Natakhtari-Aghaiani) Section of Tbilisi-Senaki-Leselidze Highway". The Legislative Herald of Georgia (in Georgian). 2005-12-22. Retrieved 2021-08-06.
  12. ^ "The President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili has opened the first expressway in Natakhtari". Saakashvili Archive (in Georgian). 2006-10-03. Retrieved 2021-08-06.
  13. ^ "Acting President of Georgia Nino Burjanadze opens expressway". Saakashvili Archive (in Georgian). 2007-12-06. Retrieved 2021-08-09.
  14. ^ "Cement-concrete paving works will be resumed on Igoeti-Sveneti section of the expressway". Roads Department Georgia (in Georgian). 2009-04-02. Retrieved 2021-08-06.
  15. ^ "Transparent International Assistance to Georgia Coalition Projects with Financial Assistance to Georgia and Their Impact on the Environment and Population". Green Alternative (in Georgian). 2009-07-30. Retrieved 2021-08-06.
  16. ^ "Opening 25 km section of the Igoeti-Sveneti Expressway". Roads Department Georgia (in Georgian). 2009-11-23. Retrieved 2021-08-06.
  17. ^ a b "World Bank Supports Georgia's Economic Development with Additional Financing for the Third East-West Highway Improvement Project". World Bank. 2012-06-26. Retrieved 2021-08-09.
  18. ^ "Strange Details in the Construction of Autobahn". Humanrights.ge. 2010-09-08. Retrieved 2021-08-06.
  19. ^ "Construction work on the first 5 km of the 15-kilometer Sveneti-Ruisi section of the E-60 Expressway has been completed". Roads Department Georgia. 2010-10-31. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  20. ^ "The construction of the 1.5 km section of the bypass road and the bridge over the river Liakhvi on the 85th km of the Sveneti-Ruisi highway E-60 has been completed". Roads Department Georgia (in Georgian). 2010-11-23. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  21. ^ "Highway Construction Completed". The Messenger Online. 2011-11-30. Retrieved 2021-08-06.
  22. ^ "Ruisi-Agara section of the highway has been opened". Roads Department Georgia. 2015-12-16. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  23. ^ "Works for construction of Agara-Zemo Osiauri section are actively progressing". Roads Department Georgia. 2015-02-06. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  24. ^ "7 km section of Agara-Zemo Osiauri road is opened". Roads Department Georgia. 2016-06-07. Retrieved 7 August 2021.
  25. ^ "Construction of Agara-Zemo Osiauri highway has been completed". Reginfo.ge (in Georgian). 2017-11-06. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  26. ^ "Khashuri Bypass Road Put into Operation". Roads Department Georgia. 2020-08-20. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  27. ^ "13km Khashuri Bypass Road Open All the Way Through". Roads Department Georgia. 2020-10-08. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  28. ^ "Construction of Zemo Osiauri-Chumateleti road starts". Roads Department Georgia. 2017-08-08. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  29. ^ "Contract Awarded for Construction of Zemo Osiauri-Chumateleti Second Section". Roads Department Georgia. 2020-12-16. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  30. ^ "Another Unfulfilled Infrastructure Project of the Georgian Dream Added - Why the Osiauri-Chumateleti Project Stopped". Commersant.ge (in Georgian). 2019-03-18. Retrieved 2021-08-07.
  31. ^ "How many millions do Georgian arbitration disputes cost?". Forbes.ge (in Georgian). 2022-03-22. Retrieved 2022-04-01.
  32. ^ "Mikheil Saakashvili: "We are building tunnels, which unify Georgia"". Saakashvili Archive. 2011-11-21. Retrieved 2021-08-08.
  33. ^ a b "Rikoti Pass section - Projects". Roads Department Georgia. Retrieved 2021-08-10.
  34. ^ "Construction of bridges and tunnels on the Rikoti Pass Road is in an active phase". Roads Department Georgia. 2019-10-08. Retrieved 2021-08-10.
  35. ^ "Georgia: East-West Highway (Khevi-Ubisa Section) Improvement Project - Project Data Sheet". Asian Development Bank. 27 September 2018. Retrieved 2021-08-10.
  36. ^ a b "Construction works commenced at two sections of Rikoti pass road". Roads Department Georgia. 2019-05-18. Retrieved 2021-08-10.
  37. ^ "Georgia: East-West Highway (Shorapani–Argveta Section) Improvement Project - Project Data Sheet". Asian Development Bank. 2019-11-22. Retrieved 2021-08-10.
  38. ^ "Zestaponi-Kutaisi Bypass-Samtredia road - Projects". Roads Department Georgia. Retrieved 2021-08-11.
  39. ^ "Zestaponi-Kutaisi Bypass road 15 km Opened". Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure of Georgia. 2017-06-27. Retrieved 2021-08-11.
  40. ^ "Construction Kutaisi Bypass road started". Roads Department Georgia (in Georgian). 2012-02-17. Retrieved 2021-08-11.
  41. ^ "Kutaisi bypass road was opened". Roads Department Georgia (in Georgian). 2014-11-19. Retrieved 2021-08-11.
  42. ^ "Construction of two new 41.3-kilometer lanes of Kutaisi bypass road is starting". Droa.ge (in Georgian). 2018-10-17. Retrieved 2021-08-11.
  43. ^ "New section of East-West highway opens in Georgia". Agenda.ge. 2016-07-15. Retrieved 2021-08-11.
  44. ^ "Kutaisi bypass road to be modernized as 4-line highwaywork=Agenda.ge". 2019-05-17. Retrieved 2021-08-11.
  45. ^ "Two-line Traffic Open at Kutaisi Bypass Road". 2020-12-29. Retrieved 2021-08-11.
  46. ^ "Law "About motor roads", consolidated version of 15 July 2020". The Legislative Herald of Georgia (in Georgian). 2020-07-15. Retrieved 2021-07-19.
  47. ^ "Georgian PM Inspects Road Construction Works at Rikoti Gorge". Georgia Today. 2021-02-02. Retrieved 2021-08-12.
  48. ^ "20 years ago, Gumista became the "red river"". Ekho Kavkaza/Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (in Russian). 15 March 2013. Retrieved 17 August 2021.
  49. ^ "In Abkhazia, a new bridge will be built across the Gumista River at the entrance to Sukhumi". Ekho Kavkaza/Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (in Russian). 2016-09-05. Retrieved 2021-08-17.
  50. ^ "In Abkhazia, a new bridge will be built across the Gumista River at the entrance to Sukhumi". Ministry of Economy of the Republic of Abkhazia (in Russian). 2021-04-13. Retrieved 2021-08-17.