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City-News Archive

Zugdidi/Sugdidi [GE] - Trolleybuses back in service after cessation of hostilities

J. Lehmann - 06.04.09

Zugdidi - Georgia

The Trolleybuses of Zugdidi ceased, during August 2008, due to the war. In October 2008 and January 2009 route 2 was being operated with between 4 and 5 Trolleybuses along it's 5.5 kilometres.

The fleet consists of four second hand vehicles and two further vehicles probably originally purchased new by the operator. Two ex Tiflis numbers 041 and 042 still carrying the yellow Athens livery, two ex Tiflis ZIU-682, numbers 02 and 08 ex Athens but in the orange and white livery of Tiflis and two further ZIU-682, numbered 04 and 05, of unknown origin although it is suspected they were probably originally purchased new by the operator in 1986.

The depot which is situated in the South Eastern part of the city was closed after overhead had been stolen. The vehicles are now parked opposite the police station in the city centre during the night.

The first Trolleybuses to operate on this system, when it opened on 24.02.1986, were seven type ZIU-9 which operated between the hospital and the neighbouring village of "Tchitatskaro" (Tsaishi ?). During 1988 a further nine vehicles arrived to augment the fleet.. In November 1989 The route was extended via the bus station to the paper works at Inguri. The route had then reached it's maximum length of 22.5 kilometres.

As far as may be ascertained from Wikipedia and Google earth Zugdidi is a large sprawling rural type of town of little or no consequence and eons behind western standards.

Our photo shows Trolleybus number 041 in it's original yellow Athens livery. This is one of the six available vehicles for this system.
Photo: Yuriy Anisimov

Translation: Bankes