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), formerly Pishpek and Frunze, is the capital and largest city of Kyrgyzstan (Kyrgyz Republic).
Bishkek is also the administrative center of the Chuy Region.
The city's main street is the east–west Chui Avenue (Chuy Prospekti), named after the region's main river. Along or near it are many of the most important government buildings and universities. The westernmost section of the avenue is known as Deng Xiaoping Avenue.
The main north–south street is Yusup Abdrakhmanov Street, still commonly referred to by its old name, Sovietskaya Street.
Streets follow a grid pattern, with most flanked on both sides by narrow irrigation channels, watering innumerable trees to provide shade in the hot summers.
Originally a caravan rest stop (possibly founded by the Sogdians) on one of the branches of the Silk Road through the Tian Shan range, the location was fortified in 1825 by the Uzbek khan of Kokhand with a mud fort.
There are also sites from the Greco-Buddhist period, the period of Nestorian influence, the era of the Central Asian khanates, and the Soviet period.
In the past it was called Dzerzhinsky Boulevard, named after a Communist revolutionary, Felix Dzerzhinsky, and its northern continuation is still called Dzerzhinsky Street.One of Bishkek's largest employment centers today is the Dordoy Bazaar open market, where many of the Chinese goods imported to CIS countries are sold.Though the city is relatively young, the surrounding area has some sites of interest dating to prehistorical times.These mountains rise to a height of 4,855 meters (15,928 ft) and provide a spectacular backdrop to the city.North of the city, a fertile and gently undulating steppe extends far north into neighboring Kazakhstan. Bishkek is connected to the Turkestan-Siberia Railway by a spur line.
The province surrounds the city, although the city itself is not part of the province, but rather a province-level unit of Kyrgyzstan.