20 August Thursday

IMP candidate for Turkeys planning

Kadir Topbaş, the İstanbul Metropolitan Mayor, introduced IMP to the councilors of Turkish Union of Municipalities, and said, “National benefits are above everything else. We can work IMP for planning of Turkey under the Ministry. Thereby we can make a transition to the national plan."

Kadir Topbaş, the Istanbul Metropolitan Mayor and the Chairman of Turkish Union of Municipalities (TBB), met the councillors of TBB at the Istanbul Metropolitan Planning and Urban Design Centre (IMP). The participants of the meeting, including Ahmet Küçüker, the Erzurum Metropolitan Mayor, Bülent Tanık, Mayor of Çankaya Municipality, Edibe Şahin, Mayor of Tunceli Municipality and Nihat Zeybekçi, the Mayor of Denizli Municipality, listened to Topbaş as he introduced IMP to the TBB Councilors and the other planning activities in Istanbul. Prof. İbrahim Baz, Director of IMP, also made a presentation on the TRAKAP (Thrace Growth Plans) and Mostar construction plans as well as on the Environmental Arrangement Plans in Istanbul.

The main problem: lack of planning

Kadir Topbaş, the Istanbul Metropolitan Mayor, took the chair following the presentation, and gave some information on the urban transformation process in Istanbul, the mass housing and renovation projects and the Environmental Arrangement Plan of 1/100.000 Scale. Topbaş said, “Today, the only problem that leads to complaints about transportation, urban arrangement, crooked settlement, and the risk of earthquakes is the lack of planning. As an architect I can assert that if we had a national plan, urban plans and proper use of the land, we would be discussing very different social projects today. We are paying the cost of this lack of planning with economic loss."

Topbaş said that IMP was founded in 2004 to give an end to the problems of Istanbul, such as lack of planning, crooked settlement and uneven growth, and highlighted that the academicians at IMP are saving great time and effort for the institution, where the scientists and politicians met for the first time. Topbaş said, "We made a decision to inform the metropolitan mayors, mayors of other cities with a population above 100.000 and then the remaining mayors on the activities and plan of IMP at the TBB Councilors' Meeting. This is what will prevent uneven migration. I hope the members of TBB, particularly the mayors, will look into the activities here. We have some model studies here which have been developed to a certain level. Some projects can be applied in certain cities. The local administrations should not become an area of political conflicts after local elections. Our country has suffered from that enough. We hold national benefits above everything else. We have to grasp these opportunities in solidarity with each other.

IMP is ready for planning Turkey

Kadir Topbaş stressed that they are ready to operate IMP under the Ministry of Housing and Construction for planning activities in Turkey, and said they are planning the future of Istanbul while taking into account the regional conditions while making great efforts at IMP. Topbaş said, “IMP is a very important model for Turkey. The universities for the first time stepped outside their campuses. Our academicians, who gave accumulated knowledge and experience at libraries, archives and scientific studies, now have the change to transfer their knowledge into practice.”

Topbaş said that non-governmental organizations and professional chambers were invited to TRAKAP and the planning activities in Istanbul, but some chambers would not participate in the activities due to their political bias. Topbaş said, "However, we always wanted to have a comprehensive activity. We strived for this. Meanwhile, we sued some of the plans prepared by the governmental ministries based on their authorities, which happened for the first time in our history. Furthermore, the ministries’ right for planning should be annulled after our activities are completed. We had a very strong disposition to do the right thing for our country. I think the politicians will appreciate this when we tell it the right way. We made a recommendation to the relevant ministry. We can operate IMP under this ministry for the planning activities in Turkey. We want to contribute to the national growth and proper use of resources. We want to spread the activities at IMP to all around Turkey. We have very dignified people here, who can undertake this task. The transition to a national plan can be provided thereby. If our mayors require, our academicians as well as the General Director o BİMTAŞ are here to provide the necessary information. They can provide services in terms of planning."

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