Definitions

Kuçovë_District

Kuçovë District

The District of Kuçovë (Rrethi i Kuçovës) is one of the thirty-six districts of Albania. It has a population of 35,000 (2004 estimate), and an area of 112 km². It is in the centre of the country, and its capital is Kuçovë.

Description

Kuçovë is one of the main centres of the Albanian oil industry, and the town of Kuçovë was built with Soviet assistance in the 1950s. It is of interest to students of communist architecture and planning, although much of the oil infrastructure predates the communist period and was installed by the Italians during the Zogist period. Today very few of the oil wells are functioning, and in some places the oil seeps to the surface.

The town suffered very badly during the post-communist period, and there are many abandoned factories and power plants in and around the town, and related to city functions, is visibly poorer than the neighbouring towns such as Berat. There is little to interest the casual tourist, and facilities for the visitor are poor even by local standards - tourists would be better advised to explore Kucove from Berat.

Kuçovë was formerly a closed military district, and the airbase at Kuçovë remains one of the largest in Albania and aged MiG fighters of 1950s vintage could be seen flying on a regular basis until they were finally grounded in late 2005.

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