Cities, from the primeval era to the present day, have been burdened with the task of being one of the most important vehicles shaped by political ideology and used in communicating with the people. Cities with these characteristics, capitals in particular, have become platforms where the traces of applied policies have been observed most clearly. Istanbul, which was the capital of three empires, extensively undertook such a role in every period of its history. Conquests, changes in regimes and radical decisions taken by political powers from time to time form important watersheds in the history of Istanbul and become obvious as a determining factor in the physical structure of the city. The Roman Emperor Constantine moving his capital to this city and converting it into the center of a Christian Empire, the conquest of Constantinople by Sultan Mehmed II in 1453 and the Turkification and Islamization of the city alongside a rapid development in construction which started immediately after the conquest, and the archaic Ottoman identity that was crowned by the power of Sultan Süleyman I and the genius of Koca Sinan; all these facts stand out as important developments and turning points in the city’s history.

The story of the modernization of Istanbul, which it has experienced in the last 150 years, includes the same important turning points. The Ottoman administration endeavored to take a series of precautions to solve the problems of the capital city in a period which ended with the collapse of the Ottoman State. However, in an environment shaped by wars, land loss and a deteriorating economic order, a majority of these efforts remained only conceptual suggestions which did not make it beyond the drafting table. Similar modernization plans for Istanbul were on the agenda of the politics during the Republican period, which adopted a much more radical reform program than the Ottomans. The regime, which enthusiastically implemented the program of replacing the Ottoman heritage with modern Western values, envisaged a series of changes regarding the re-planning of cities through reshaping and redefining the public space based on the norms of Western civilization along with fundamental changes in other areas. In this respect, what needed to be transformed in Istanbul was not only the urban fabric of the former Ottoman capital, but also the symbolic identity and meaning. The drastic changes experienced in the Turkish political and economic life after the World War II opened a new page in the history of Istanbul. An urban-planning program which included radical changes in this era was put into practice for Istanbul, a city that had experienced occupation and lost the feature of being the capital - a position which it had held for thousands of years - and whose population had decreased, becoming neglected and dilapidated.

1- A magnificent view of Istanbul

The subject of this article is the large-scale urban-planning movement that was carried out to redesign the physical form of the city to bring to an end the ‘long-standing neglect’ experienced under administrations prior to that of prime minister Adnan Menderes after World War II; this era holds an important place in the long journey of Istanbul. This urban planning program, which took place between the years 1956-1960, has been recognized as the most recent large-scale intervention to shape the historical core of Istanbul. Wide avenues were constructed in Istanbul, many buildings were demolished, and coastal roads were built surrounding the Historical Peninsula. The urban planning of Istanbul, to which Menderes dedicated the last four years of his life, would be unrelenting in terms of court cases, as well as in Yassıada, where he was judged after being suspended from power through a military coup in 1960. In the Corruption Expropriation case, which was one of the most important cases to be filed against the deposed prime minister, Menderes was accused - along with some ex-mayors and bureaucrats - of carrying out the urban planning program in an irresponsible manner and carrying out expropriation in an unlawful manner. Menderes was found guilty of this and other accusations as well, and was executed on 17 September 1961, hanged on the island of Imralı.1

This radical change that Istanbul underwent placed Menderes at the focal point of these discussions, creating an image of the prime minister which made him unpopular in Turkish architectural history.

This situation shapes a critical view that is beset with prejudice and beliefs; stereotyped images based mostly on Menderes’ unique behavior and personal characteristics. Even though such assessments are based on fact, they contain systematic problems. First of all, it should be stated that the criticism put forward about the urban transformation of Istanbul in the 1950s mostly focuses on the physical changes that occurred in the fabric of the city, covering each and every of these changes, one by one. In other words, when it comes to the changes that took place or were planned to take place in Late Ottoman and Early Republican periods, the strong relationship of Menderes with urban planning is not much considered. Moreover, the impact of historical, cultural and political developments, which underlie the physical change that Istanbul went through in the mid-twentieth century, on the architecture of Istanbul are generally not taken into consideration, especially when it comes to the Menderes period.

In fact, the fundamental changes that Istanbul experienced in the 1950s emerged as the result of the modernization process which started in the early periods of the nineteenth century. In other words, even though this urban planning movement is referred to with the name of Adnan Menderes, in the background lies a process that stretches back 150 years. It is only possible to understand the radical changes that Istanbul underwent between 1956 and 1960 by reading these alongside this long journey of modernization. In this article, an evaluation which includes the outlines of such a reading will be presented.

Istanbul after World War II

After World War II many things began to change in Turkey. During this period, Turkey, part of the Western Block, shifted to a multi-party political system. The opposition which became obvious within the only political party at that time, the Cumhuriyet Halk Partisi (Republican People’s Party), segregated from the party and the Demokrat Parti (Democratic Party) was established in 1946. Even though the Demokrat Parti did not win the elections that took place in the same year – elections which were referred to as ‘dubious’ - it appeared as a promising new political force for the future.

Although the 1946 elections did not bring a new government to the country, the success that the Demokrat Parti achieved in such a short time presented a clear warning to the people who govern Turkey that the existing order was not sustainable. A series of changes took place at later stages. Some flexibility was brought to the strict practices in social and economic areas that had been enforced during the war years, as well as in the implementation of the secular system, which had been applied without compromise; a softer attitude was adopted on a small-scale.

One of the most important elements of this change experienced after the war was the strong relationship established with the United States of America, in an attempt to avoid the danger of Communism. Even though Turkey did not participate in the war, it was included in the Marshall Fund. It started receiving technical and financial support from the Americans in the military area and in the modernization of agricultural production in particular. The target of modernizing agriculture led to a need to modernize the archaic transportation system of the country. A technical delegation from the US Highway Administration came to Turkey in 1948; in the same year an agreement was signed between the two countries, including highway improvement. According to the Minister of Public Works, Kasım Gülek, this agreement would not only “bring Central Europe and the Balkans closer to the Middle East,” but also it would ease “the burden of the United States in opposing the threat of Communism in Europe”.2 According to Deputy Prime Minister Nihat Erim, Turkey would soon be “a small America” in its region.3 These works resulted in the establishment of the General Directorate of Highways, which was organized in a semi-autonomous position within the ministry; this directorate was seen to be a “Trojan horse” in Turkish architectural history as it played a role during the urban planning program of Menderes.4

The policies that followed in the years after the war had an important impact on Istanbul. The population policy that had been followed since the early years of the Republic began to waver from this time on. Turkey was a country in which 80% of the population lived in villages and the preservation of this structure had been carefully followed by the regime. In a country where there was almost no industry, the migration of the villagers to the big cities could create chaos; in the 1930s, a time when the regime tried to create its own ideology and form its structural setup, such an occurrence would have made the provision of social control impossible. For this reason, it was thought that villagers should be kept in the villages and measures should be taken to ensure this. For a considerable part of the regime, the ideology of peasantism, the foundation of which was laid during the late Ottoman period, was strengthening. On the one hand, semi-official authors of the Ülkü magazine,5 such as Nusret Kemal Köymen, and on the other hand, academics who worked at Istanbul University, such as Ömer Celal Sarc, Ziyaeddin Fahri Fındıkoğlu and Ömer Lütfi Barkan, defended an attitude that was openly hostile to the city. According to peasantists, the city was an unhealthy and chaotic structure in which corrupt class struggles, misery, moral decadence and social corruption were experienced. According to the German professor Wilhelm Röpke who worked at Istanbul University in those years, the ideal city should have a population of at most 30,000 people.6 On the other hand, these groups drew a portrait of an imaginary village. According to this view, peasants were the real owners of the noble, non-degenerated, clever and practical character of the Turkish nation.7 The peasantists, who were under the influence of the German sozialpolitik current, insisted that small-scale farms, based on the erbhof model of the National Socialist Germans, should be founded. During this period, Turkish architects were working on proposals for ideal village plans.8 The developments after 1945 meant the collapse of the peasantist utopias. The modernization of agriculture and the development of transportation meant the reduction of manpower in villages. The migration of unemployed crowds to the big cities, mainly Istanbul, began.

2- A plan designed by Auric after 1911 Aksaray Fire showing the new roads including 50-neter wide main road connecting Yenikapı to Aksaray (<em>Génie Civil Ottoman</em>, 1912)

Istanbul was caught unprepared for all these developments. There was no plan for housing those who migrated to Istanbul soon after World War II. The urban population, which was 860,558 in 1945 within the municipality borders, would increase by 47%, and this number would reach 1,268,771 by 1955.9 The housing shortage that emerged with the increasing population was fueled by the illegal use of public land for building houses outside the city walls, particularly in Kazlıçeşme and Zeytinburnu; this is how Istanbul met the eternal problem known as gecekondus (shanties). The French planner Henri Prost was invited to Istanbul in 1936 with great hopes for the preparation of an urban development plan; he remained in office until 1950, a total of 14 years in office. However, his plans did not foresee such an increase in population. Prost did not include the obvious pressure that the city’s population growth would create sooner or later in his plans. However, the German city planner Martin Wagner, who worked in Istanbul before Prost and the French planner Jacques-Henri Lambert, who was invited during an urban planning contest that took place in 1933, predicted in their reports that the prospective population of Istanbul would increase up to between 2,000,000 and 2,500,000.

Istanbul in the First Years of the Demokrat Parti

The developments in the five-year period after World War II, starting with the elections that took place in May 14, 1950, opened a new page in Turkish political history. Actually what had happened with the 1946 elections was a harbinger of a possible Demokrat Parti government. Indeed, in the 1950 elections, the Demokrat Parti showed a success above what was hoped, receiving 53% of the votes. The election system which had been designed in the late 1940s based on the assumption that the Cumhuriyet Halk Partisi would win the seats, enabled the Demokrat Parti to take 58% of the parliamentary seats. The Demokrat Parti, building on this achievement, took 500 of 600 municipalities across Turkey in the local government elections held on September 3, 1950. The Istanbul election results revealed a rather more dramatic result for the Cumhuriyet Halk Partisi. The Demokrat Parti won a psychological victory against the Cumhuriyet Halk Partisi by winning all of the seats in the Istanbul Municipal Council.

3- “The restored bastions around Topkapı walls which are at the beginning of
    50-meter wide Millet Avenue and at the entrance gate of Edirne-Istanbul state
    highway. They have the characteristics that might invoke the most effective
    impression upon every traveler coming from Europe and entering to our city. This
    picture shows the concrete mixer pouring 25 cm thick concrete at the beginning of
    Millet Avenue.”

Istanbul’s “miserable” state before and after the municipal elections was one of the themes often used by the representatives of the Demokrat Parti. According to the State Minister and Government Spokesman Samet Agaoğlu, in the first years of the Republic an “incomprehensible hatred of Istanbul” emerged. Many official institutions “moved to Ankara, both necessarily and unnecessarily”, and in a way Istanbul was nearly abandoned to its fate.10 According to the Demokrat Parti Istanbul deputy Ahmet Hamdi, who chaired the Istanbul Regional Development Congress in 1952, after the capital was moved to Ankara, Istanbul was neglected and regarded “in a way as the remnant of the destroyed empire”.11 According to Istanbul Technical University architecture professor Emin Onat, who spoke in the later days of the congress and who would work in the team that directed the urban planning movement of Menderes later on, the nearly 15 years that Prost had worked for were wasted and Istanbul was almost disfigured “in the hands of a semi-skilled laborer”.12

The first thing that the Demokrat Parti municipality did developed from the debate over Prost’s service. The point to which the French planner came after a service of 14 years was often criticized both by press and political circles. In fact, Prost had been appointed with great expectations. The results obtained at the end of the competition held in 1933 to prepare an urban plan for Istanbul were found to be unsatisfactory. Even the request of Le Corbusier, one of the key figures of modern architecture, that Istanbul be planned was not respected by the government. Prost carried out the urban planning of many cities, in particular Paris, Toulon, St. Tropez and St. Raphael. Perhaps most important for the government was Prost’s experience in the modernization of Muslim cities like Casablanca, Fez, Rabat, Meknes and Marrakech under the French colonial government in North Africa. In the end, Prost, who did not enter the competition in 1933 due to high demand, was appointed after three years delay. The plans that Prost prepared in two years were unanimously accepted by the City Council in a 1938 session; there were now great expectations.13 Istanbul had been occupied after World War I and was quite battered. Afterwards, she had lost all the privileges that she had gained throughout her history of thousands of years; this was the result of moving the capital to Ankara. The post-war population was down to 650,000. The neglected former capital of the Ottoman State had been left in an expert’s hands with the confidence that he would imbue the dynamics of Kemalist Turkey in the transformation of the city.

Prost’s urban development plan was prepared on the basis of dividing Istanbul into industrial, commercial, residential and recreational areas, and on the basis of establishing an efficient transportation system. In order to realize these goals, the French urban planner offered radical proposals that would change the physical structure of the city. According to Prost’s proposals, in certain parts of the Historical Peninsula a new urban fabric that was compatible with modern design principles would be created. This meant the deletion of the traditional texture, the existence of which had been preserved for centuries, especially on the western side of the peninsula. Wide avenues were to be opened on the Historical Peninsula; even the Grand Bazaar would be surrounded by large roads. City walls would be protected and, outside them, a 500-meter wide green area would be created.14 The city walls of the Marmara Sea coasts would be protected to the extent that the new to-be-created neighborhoods would allow. In addition to these, only the characteristic parts of the walls along the Golden Horn would not be touched. Prost had even more radical proposals for the Beyoğlu area. According to the French planner, the entire area between the northern coasts of the Golden Horn and Taksim should be completely demolished and rebuilt if possible.15

4- “At the beginning of the works of lowering down the level of the road, the state
    of the part of Ordu Avenue, which opens to Beyazıt Square.”

Prost had prepared a thorough itinerary for Istanbul. According to the French planner “new roads, that will regulate transportation, should be created immediately.” Sometimes these roads would be augmented by tunnels and sometimes they would go over viaducts that would be established in the valleys. According to Prost, his Istanbul plan for “the network of automobile roads” was more modern than the plans he had previously prepared for Paris16 (Figure 1).

Despite all of these ambitious projects, only a small part of what Prost planned was realized. There were two main reasons for this. First of all, the difficult circumstances experienced during World War II were not suitable for allowing such costly works. The second main reason was that some of the works in the plan were neither designed in detail nor were they feasible. The proposed roads were either suggested without taking into account the city’s topography or they required costly tunnels and viaducts or extensive expropriation. Under these conditions, the most sizeable work that was undertaken on the Historical Peninsula was the construction of the Aksaray-Unkapanı section of Atatürk Boulevard. Actually this 50-meter wide road was planned by the French engineer André Auric, who was invited from the Lyon municipality between 1910 and 1913; he came to Istanbul for various projects (Figure 2). The Yenikapı - Aksaray section of this avenue had been previously opened. The projected but incomplete sections of the avenue were completed by Prost. The opening of Eminönü Square was the second largest project that was able to be completed on the Historical Peninsula. Although the buildings surrounding Yeni Cami were demolished, because the buildings that existed in the project had not eventuated, there emerged nothing else but a large gap (Figure 3). The works that could be completed were advertised as great successes in the pamphlets prepared by the municipality. Prost had more luck when the opposite side of the Golden Horn is considered. Taksim Square was arranged, İnönü Gezi Park was built by demolishing the former Artillery Barracks, and Maçka Park, a project that included an open-air theatre and a football stadium, was created (Figure 4).

Under these circumstances, Istanbul Municipal Council, which convened on December 5, 1950, decided to establish a commission to prepare a report to investigate the feasibility of Prost’s plans.17 The Commission’s report was presented to the council on 26 December. The report stressed that despite a period of 14 years having passed, the plans were still incomplete. The critical approach of the report was shared by most of the council members as well. As a result, despite the fact that the contract of the French planner, who had been originally appointed for three years, had been extended for another eleven years in total, he could not deliver a significant result. For many of the members, it was clear that another extension of the contract would not result in anything positive.18

Another issue discussed in the assembly was the critical debate about Prost’s personality. According to many members, the French planner had lost his professional authority as a result of pressure from the government. Given as an example was Prost’s proposal to give land purchased by the municipality during the construction of Maçka Park to President İnönü. Moreover, the fact that during Prost’s service he did not train any Turkish architect was another matter that caused a reaction. The majority of the council members thought that Prost had completed his service and now it was the time to give this position to a Turkish architect who knew the city better.19

5- “In this picture which shows the bird’s eye view of the newly emerging University site in Beyazıt, Ordu Avenue which has been broadened to 30-meter wide is seen.
    Beyazıt Square can also be seen in far away in the picture.”

While all these discussions were continuing, the council decided to listen to Prost’s opinions regarding the issues under discussion. Actually, this was not an invitation made by the council. Prost wrote a letter saying that he wanted to explain the situation to the council. In his speech, Prost complained about the fact that the legislation he had demanded from the council and government had not been realized during the time he was in service. He wanted some changes to be made to the Yapı, Yollar ve İstimlak Kanunu (Buildings, Roads and Land Expropriation Act), even in 1937 but despite all the time that passed, no advance was made. According to Prost, the shortcomings in the legislation were the most important reason for him not achieving the desired result.20 In fact, Prost had expressed these thoughts in the report he prepared in 1948. In these reports, the French planner made it clear that he had no hope about the implementation of the urban plan.21 Even before the speech in the City Council, in interviews given to the newspapers Prost hinted at the weariness and disappointment that he was experiencing. According to Prost, the municipality’s “laziness” and the fact that it did not carry out what was asked were the reasons for all of the problems, and they occupied him with unrelated issues such as “how many meters high should the Ahmet Efendi chimney be”.22

To finish, at the City Council Prost made explanations regarding the land in Taşlık. In one of the reports he prepared in 1940, he had suggested that the land in Taşlık be allocated to President İnönü. During the general planning study for Maçka Park, he learnt that İnönü had a small piece of land near the intended park and he thought that as such a small piece of land was not in keeping with the office of president, he had expressed that he thought the proposal in question was suitable. These statements brought the existing atmosphere against Prost to a climax. Even the members who had initially supported the renewal of the contract of the French planner expressed the view that Prost had lost his professional authority due to political pressure and his contract should definitely not be renewed. The voting resulted in only three members out of thirty-two voting in favor of extending the contract. In this way, Prost’s long-term mission in Istanbul ended quietly, far from the enthusiasm present when he had come to Istanbul 14 years earlier.

After Prost, the Demokrat Parti established a temporary Revision Commission, consisting of Turkish experts, to carry out the planning works in Istanbul. This case was in a way a triumph for Turkish experts who thought they had been neglected due to the appointments of foreign experts in architecture and urbanism since the beginning of the 1930s. Many architects, writing in the journal Arkitekt, expressed their reproach regarding this issue. For instance, according to Burhan Arif, who wrote before the urban planning competition of 1933, to which three European experts were invited, the planning of Istanbul “was a world unto itself.” It would be a great mistake to compare the plans prepared for Istanbul to plans prepared for a French, American or a German city. The city of Istanbul had an “aesthetic scale that would not be appreciated” by a foreigner by wandering around its streets; this could only be done “if you are from the East”.23 According to the architect Abidin, “money, favors, entitlements” were provided to foreign architects without any concern for their appropriateness. In the meantime, the young Turkish architects grew up “unassisted and distrustful, like a stepchild”.24

6- “The level of Beyazıt Square, which is the greatest center of not only the
    university but also the city has been lowered 3.5 meters down and thus all
    buildings and monuments have revealed themselves in all their magnificence.”

In its 1951 report the Revision Commission heavily criticized Prost’s plans.25 The greatest problem was that statistical data was not used in the plans; there was no data about population, transportation, housing, education, geology or meteorology. Moreover, because the roads and squares that Prost proposed were prepared without taking into account the topography of the city, they were not found to be realistic. The poor quality of the prepared plans and cartographic materials were among the issues criticized. After the temporary commission, a working group consisting of Turkish experts, known as the Müşavirler Heyeti (Delegation of Advisors), was formed in 1952. All of these developments resulted in two new separate urban plans for Istanbul and the Beyoglu district.26 With the plans prepared by the commission, for the first time in its history Istanbul had an urban construction plan prepared jointly by a group of experts. Moreover, these plans were developed in the line with the recommendations of organizations such as the Chamber of Industry and the Chamber of Commerce, central government institutions and the City Council. Interestingly, the newly prepared plans contained most of Prost’s proposals. The proposed road scheme, the squares that had been planned to be opened and the industry and port facilities which had been planned by the Marmara Sea coast were in many ways similar to the French planner’s proposals.27

7- “The formless ugly buildings which had been creating sharp edges and causing
    densities in front of and across the governorate building on Ankara Street have
    been demolished and thus the City Square has been broadened. In this picture, it
    is seen that the square is ready for public development.

Menderes’ Urban Planning Program

During that time that all of this planning work was being carried out no essential solution to the problems of Istanbul was produced. The population continued to increase, the number of motor vehicles in the streets of the city grew rapidly, there was no solution for the traffic jams, or the problems in transportation or infrastructure. Under these conditions, the first crucial move towards urban planning in Istanbul came with a press conference given by Prime Minister Menderes on September 23, 1956.28 Although the work began months in advance, the public announcement of urban planning was carried out during a long meeting, and was made by the prime minister himself. Menderes started his statement by emphasizing the economic success that had been gained in the first five years of power by the Demokrat Parti. According to the prime minister, there was a clear difference “between the constructive power of yesterday’s and today’s governments”. Due to earlier financial difficulties, some projects had not been carried out, however with the advance in the economy no excuse remained for the government to postpone the urban planning program. In addition, the Demokrat Parti government now had experience in the field of urban planning. Lessons had been learned from the mistakes made in Ankara and the property rights of the owners would now be protected. Like many politicians of the post-war period, the prime minister believed that it was necessary to construct new roads, thus giving car transportation an opportunity. In this context, Menderes’ urban planning program was modelled on the idea of opening wide streets in Istanbul. In the proposed scheme, wide boulevards which connected the city centers to one another, both on the Historical Peninsula and outside it, were opened. Moreover, coastal roads that lined the coasts of the Sea of Marmara and the Golden Horn were proposed in the new program, as they had been in the previous period. According to Menderes, the traffic congestion would be eliminated and the existing street pattern had to be reorganized; the “ugly” buildings around the great mosques should be demolished, new and wide avenues should be built, and finally the attraction of Istanbul for foreign tourists should be increased. Tourists from Europe must be welcomed by a highway that led from the airport in Yeşilköy and these first-class roads should lead to the city center; in this way, whether “friends or enemies”, no foreigners should pass through underdeveloped districts of Istanbul which “looked like a medieval town”.

Later on, in the press meeting, it was stated that problematic junctions which suffered from traffic all day in Aksaray, Beyazıt, Eminönü, Kadıköy, Tophane and Taksim would be reorganized and the squares would be renewed. The connecting roads and those that constituted the skeleton of the city were to be improved. Every district of the city was to be connected to one another with excellent roads. The Karaköy Square would be enlarged, it would first be connected to Beşiktaş and then to the Bosphorus with a wide road going through Salıpazarı. Galata Bridge would be relocated to be aligned with the new square. Beşiktaş Square would be enlarged and connected to Yıldız with a new and wide boulevard. A new coastal road would be built between Eminönü and Florya, and Yenikapı would be transformed into a new recreation area. With the construction of this coastal road, the coast of the Sea of Marmara was expected to be opened to all residents of Istanbul. Eyüp would be reorganized and connected to the other city centers by three or four different roads. Finally, a wide road, parallel to the Bosphorus, would be built between Üsküdar and Beykoz.

8- “In this picture, Prime Minister Adnan Menderes who has paid close attention to every step of Istanbul development movements is in the tomb of Sultan Süleyman I. He
    is seen as inspecting the matters related to Süleymaniye Complex (Kulliyah).”

Other works to be carried out were described in the finest detail in statements made by Menderes. For instance, a modern marketplace was to be built and called Manifaturacılar Çarşısı (Drapers Bazaar) in the section between Atatürk Boulevard and the bridge to Şehzadebaşı. An 18-story building would be built on land where the tunnel in Galata as located, Çırağan Palace would be turned into a hotel “even more magnificent than its counterparts in Europe”. The buildings surrounding Süleymaniye Mosque would be cleaned, and all of these works would be completed before the 500th anniversary celebration marking the conquest of the city, in 1953. The government would solve the problem of gecekondus by increasing the amount of land allocated to be sold for new residential areas. Most importantly, while all of these things were taking place, the full support of the central government would be given.

The roads included in Menderes’ urban planning program were not a new phenomenon for Istanbul. All of the suggestions prepared from the time of the report of Tatarcık Abdullah Efendi, presented in 1792 to Selim III, were modelled on creating an effective network of roads for the city.29 In reality, the Ottoman Istanbul was a city of pedestrians; during the modernization period, the establishment of a network of roads to meet requirements had always been on the agenda. The urban planning of the Menderes period suggested a similar road scheme to earlier proposals. The İmar Yönetmeliği (urban regulations) prepared in 1939 was modelled on the idea of linking the main centers of the city via wide streets in an east-west direction; this was proposed by the Demokrat Parti on the suggestion of Auric and was similar to Henri Prost’s urban plan. Together with Millet and Vatan Streets, the construction of the section of Ordu Street in Beyazıt was to form the backbone of the urban planning program. These planned roads, together with Atatürk Boulevard, which had been completed in previous periods, made Aksaray an important junction in the center of the Historical Peninsula (Figure 5).

9- “In this picture, Prime Minister Adnan Menderes while dictating his orders to
    those in charge about working on the monuments of the city attain an identity
    fitting to the magnificence and beauty of the city”

The main arterial route followed the first part of the Sultanahmet Mosque - Beyazıt - Aksaray axis. The Divanyolu, situated between Sultanahmet Mosque and Çemberlitaş, was enlarged by the Islahat-ı Turuk Komisyonu (Turkish Reform Commission) in the late 1860s.30 The construction of the remaining section between Beyazit and Aksaray, began before the First World War under the supervision of the French engineer Auric, and was opened as an avenue measuring 30 meters wide. The unfinished section of this axis created a narrow street in Beyazit. The most controversial demolition in the urban planning program of Menderes, Hasan Paşa Hanı and Simkeşhane, took place in this area. Prost made proposals to solve this problem in 1944. However, this recommendation was not implemented, like so many other recommendations by the French planner. In fact, the projects put forward by the Demokrat Parti regarding this area had been on the agenda since 1952. Projects involving the expansion of the road by demolishing Hasan Paşa Hanı and Simkeşhane had been sent to the Gayrimenkul Eski Eserler ve Anıtlar Yüksek Kurulu (Supreme Council of Property of Antiquities and Monuments) many times. After long and heated debates, the Yüksek Kurulu approved the project in 1956 and the demolitions took place.31

10- The picture which manifests the state of Eyüp Mosque and Tomb before opening their surroundings shows the tragic state of this proverbial corner of Istanbul before it was touched by the hand of development. Public improvements have not only helped Eyüp regain its spiritual atmosphere but also given it a modern appearance.”

Another important element of the urban development operations on the Historical Peninsula was the construction of Millet Street, which connected Aksaray to Topkapı, and the construction of Vatan Street, bringing Aksaray to the city walls further north. Millet Street, which is 50 meters wide and now known as Turgut Özal Street, brought the Istanbul-Edirne motorway to the city center. Millet Street was one of the main boulevards in Prost’s urban plan. However, except for some extensions carried out near Aksaray and the construction of a small part in the west near Topkapı, this project was not implemented during the 1940s. Prost designed Vatan Strreet as a road that would pass through a zoo and a botanical garden to be built in Yenibahçe Valley. This road would serve the Olympic Stadium that was planned, but never built, outside the city walls. When Vatan Street, known today as Adnan Menderes Boulevard, was opened in 1957, it became the widest boulevard in Turkey to have been constructed until that time; it had eight lanes for traffic and was 60 meters wide (Figure 6). The areas that were allocated as parking zones in Prost’s urban plan were divided into parcels and allocated to various public institutions, such as the İşçi Sigortaları Kurumu (workers’ insurance institution), the police department and the municipality of Istanbul. Finally, Kennedy Street, built between Sirkeci and Florya, following the Sea of Marmara coast, and Ragıp Gümüşpala Street, along the Golden Horn and opened between Eminönü and Unkapanı, were constructed as coastal roads surrounding the Historical Peninsula (Figure 7 and Figure 8).

11- Eyüp and its neighborhood which had almost lost their identity to be the Islamic atmosphere of the city after long periods of neglect received special attention in the
    new movement of public development. This picture shows Prime Minister Adnan Menderes inspecting the development plans on a model. A third bridge over the Golden
    Horn is also seen on the model.”

The opening of Karaköy Square on the other side of the Golden Horn was one the most important projects carried out on the Beyoğlu side. Since the late 1930s the traffic chaos at the square had posed a major problem. Although a certain part of the existing route from Karaköy to Dolmabahçe was extended in the 1940s, the large-scale demolition work proposed by Prost could not be carried out. A road that connected the newly opened square to Dolmabahçe over Salıpazarı was built. Again, Karaköy Square was connected to Atatürk Bridge via Perşembe Pazarı with a wide road that followed the north coast of the Golden Horn. Beşiktaş Square was expanded and Barbaros Boulevard, connecting the square to Levent, was constructed (Figure 9). On the other side of the Bosphorus, the expansion of Bağdat Street, between Kızıltoprak and Bostancı, and the motorway work between Haydarpaşa and Pendik were among th emajor projects that were completed in this period.

12- This model which shows Eminönü square and the state of the street
    between Eminönü and Unkapanı as well as the buildings along it is a concrete
    representation of the public improvements movement. The spacious state of the
    square after clearing around New Mosque is seen at the first sight. The avenue
    between Eminönü and Unkapanı is planned to be a 50-meter wide concreteasphalt road. The big commercial buildings, warehouses, and storage facilities
    which will be built along two sides of this road and the stores lining up by these
    buildings embody the modern state that this district, the most vibrant business
    section of the city, will attain the near future. Considering the tragic and ugly
    situation of the fish market and its neighborhood until recently, the success of the
    magic hand of public development can be better understood.

13- “This picture which looks at Eminönü Square over the Sirkeci pier catches the
        works of beginning to construct Eminönü-Unkapanı street and excavating the ruins
        of the old worn building behind the elegant skyline of New Mosque.”

14- A scene from the restoration works of Karaköy Bridge which were completed
            in 1957.”

The opening of the roads during the Menderes period, causing the destruction of approximately 5,000 buildings, was the most controversial issue in the urban planning program. According to the view voiced by Turkish architectural circles, even though Menderes seemed to have applied the road scheme of Prost, the roads were built two or three times wider than what the French planner had suggested. This situation was perceived as the influence of highway engineers during the urban planning operations.32 In fact, the idea of interconnecting the city centers with avenues had been a common characteristics of almost all the projects prepared since the nineteenth century. In an urban planning regulation prepared in 1839, just before the Tanzimat Edict, wide roads extending in an east-west axis were proposed for the Historical Peninsula. According to a submitted urban plan, attributed to the Prussian soldier, Helmuth von Moltke, who came to Istanbul during the reign of Mahmud II, Istanbul was to be surrounded by 15 meter wide roads; this repeated a frequent mistake in the history of Turkish architecture. Again, wide coastal roads following the Sea of Marmara and the Golden Horn were to surround the Historical Peninsula.33 Considering that the width of the most central artery of Istanbul, Divanyolu, narrows to 3 meters in some parts, it can be understood what it means to have suggested roads 15 meters wide under the conditions of this period. A similar road scheme was offered by Auric in the early twentieth century. The French engineer proposed roads ranging in width between five and fifty meters, stretching from Aksaray to the gates on the land walls. Again, the coastal roads were to be constructed along the coasts of the Sea of Marmara and the Golden Horn.34 Prost’s plans were full of avenues designed for every corner of Istanbul. Prost not only extended the 50-meter wide road of Auric, which finished in Aksaray, but projected other wide avenues, reaching 30, 40 or 50 meters on the Historical Peninsula. To sum up, there were proposals to open extremely wide streets in Istanbul before Menderes, and some of these proposals found the chance of being completed, such as Atatürk Boulevard.

Echoes of Urban Planning in the Community

Both the announcements of Menderes at the press conference, when the urban planning program was officially announced, and the works carried out before this had the support of people from all segments of society. The demolitions performed and the construction of new roads were openly supported with striking titles such as “Istanbul as the Future’s Most Modern City of the Middle East” or “700 Million Lira Allocated to Urban Works” could be seen in newspaper headlines.35 Moreover, many columnists and commentators did not hesitate to say that they fully supported Menderes’ urban planning program. For instance, Şevket Rado, in his article which compared Istanbul to Paris, complained that there were no wide streets in Istanbul and he stressed that the new works being carried out would solve this problem.36 In another article, Rado wrote that by cleaning the buildings around the Süleymaniye Mosque and constructing a 70-meter wide road to be opened from Atatürk Boulevard to Süleymaniye, “an aspect of Süleymaniye that Turks had not seen for centuries” would emerge.37 Menderes’ urban planning movement was even an issue which appeared in the international media from time to time. In an article appearing in Time Magazine, entitled “Benevolent Bomber” in 1957, room was given to exaggerated news, for example, the story that in one week more than 10,000 buildings had been demolished in Istanbul, costing 1,000,000 dollars a day. The passion that Menderes had for urban planning was sometimes embellished with mysterious stories. It was narrated that when Menderes was on an official visit to Baghdad, he got out of the bed in the middle of the night and sent a telegram saying: “I have decided to demolish the house across from the Spice Bazaar. Go ahead with the demolition.”38

15- “Karaköy Square is doubtlessly one of Istanbul squares where traffic is the
    heaviest. Despite this fact, there was no square and it could be opened after
    demolishing the shabby stores existing the Karaköy side of the bridge. Our picture
    catches the stage of removing those stores.

16- Even though it was an utmost necessity, there had not been a square built in
        Karaköy for years. It became possible only after demolishing the one floor shabby
        stores and opening some space for the square. Our picture catches the moment of
        removing the Building of City Lines on which existed the corner of the bridge.”

17- “We see the first stage of the works of opening a square in Karaköy in this
            picture. This square will be widened and become both an adornment of the city
            at its gate from the sea side and also a passage through which the traffic of the
            European side can be easly flow.”

The support for the urban planning program was not only limited to the press. Encouraging comments were written and spoken one after another in architectural circles. According to the editor of Arkitekt, Zeki Sayar, the works, started with a demolition and expansion that had not been experienced since the period in which Cemil Topuzlu was mayor, indicated a “change of mentality” in the municipality. According to Sayar, urban planning was not possible without demolition. Turning Karaköy into a square and expanding the coastal road from Karaköy to Bebek were events that should “please every urbanite.”39 Also academic circles supported the urban planning program. Professor of administrative law at Istanbul University, Sıddık Sami Onar, termed the demolition of the Fish Market in Eminönü an “auspicious event” and he defended the opinion that the small number of successful urban planning movements in Turkey had only been made possible by the “product of energetic enterprise and deeds of some men from the government, administration and state”. According to Onar, municipalities lacked the experience, vision and technical capabilities to carry out large-scale urban planning operations. Therefore, the intervention of the central will in the urban planning work was inevitable.40 Interestingly, the fact that Menderes perceived the urban planning program of Istanbul as a government issue was heavily criticized in court cases lodged after the 1960 coup; his initiative was regarded as a crime. Onar would also produce a variety of formulas to prove the constitutional legitimacy of the coup and later he would be chair the committee which drafted the new constitution.

The Background of Urban Planning

The urban planning program that Menderes carried out is generally regarded today as a tool of political propaganda. According to many, Menderes became involved in urban planning in a city that everyone in Turkey was watching in order to cover up unrest in society during a period, after the mid-1950s, when economic progress had ceased and to demonstrate political power to the masses.41 As stated at the beginning of this article, throughout history cities formed a stage on which political regimes could share their ideologies with the wider masses. Of course, it was normal for large projects to make waves in the largest city of Turkey, a country which, after World War II, had experienced radical changes to its political system. Surely, Menderes was aware of the power in his hands, as with all politicians, and he used the urban planning of Istanbul as a tool of political propaganda. Precisely for this reason, in the 1950 elections, Menderes did not come to the parliament as a representative of his city of origin Aydin, but as his close friend Mükerrem Sarol expressed, he came through “the grand door of Istanbul”.42

On the other hand, an emphasis on political propaganda, even though there is a certain truth, is not sufficient to understand the entire picture. In other words, the opinion that Menderes used the urban planning movement as a mere tool to hoodwink the masses at a time when he was in political trouble should not be seen as an accurate assessment. It was a well-known fact that the urban planning of Istanbul had been an important issue since the day the Demokrat Parti came to power. In the memoirs of Menderes’ close colleagues, it is emphasized that the urban planning of Istanbul was an issue which the prime minister had been busy with since the early periods of his power. It can be surmised that this was not a project merely to hoodwink masses; the implementations which started in 1956 did not begin without any preparations nor unexpectedly; indeed, immediately after the municipal elections of 1950, Prost’s contract was ended and subsequently a group of Turkish experts prepared an urban planning program for approximately five years.

18- “In this beautiful picture taken from the minaret of Kılıç Ali Paşa Mosque,
    Sultan Mahmud I Public Fountain is under restoration and revival. This great work
    of architecture was saved from being a cesspool and presented as a gift to our
    beautiful city. Nusretiye mosque seen far away in this picture which had been used
    as storage facility for long years got in hands and restored and started to adorn
    the road along Bosporus like an ornament. Tophane Square is one of the most
    beautiful squares of Istanbul. So much so that the aesthetic identity of the square
    can be completed only after opening the square and making the works of art
    visible. In this way, Tophane Square will be another adornment on the road along

Another criticism of Menderes’ urban planning movement was the determining role that the prime minister played in the four-year period (Figure 10). According to many evaluations, Menderes carried out his urban planning program in a hasty manner without consulting experts, only referring to his limited staff and without basing it on a clear program or well-prepared plans. In this context, the Karayolları Genel Müdürlüğü (general directorate of highways) and the engineers related to this institution are not commemorated with respect. According to many critics today, the works initiated in the entire city at the same time were actualized neither with a “program” nor with a “plan”. Due to a lack of time, plans were not made in detail and ultimately decisions were ad hoc, that is, as the work progressed. All of these unplanned and unscheduled applications simply transformed Istanbul into “sketch paper”.43

19- “The great Salı Pazarı facilities with their greatness, warehouses, and 610-meter long pier which gives Istanbul the appearance of a real and modern port.”

Such accusations were directed at the prime minister after the 1960 coup; these were made in the İstimlak Yolsuzluğu Davası (expropriation corruption case) opened in Yassıada. Attorney General Altay Ömer Egesel accused Menderes of trying to rebuild Istanbul without any prepared urban plans. According to the attorney, the prime minister did not work well; instead he moved into a room in Park Hotel, where the expenses were paid by the government, and carried out the works in the manner of a “head architect and second conqueror” of the city. According to the attorney general, “if Menderes had any idea about the urban planning of Istanbul one way or another, he could have transmitted the general character of this idea in the year 1956, when he came to office, and Istanbul would not have been turned upside down within the short period of 3-4 years.”44 Except for one of the former mayors of Istanbul, Kemal Aygün, everyone tried in the same case with Menderes held Menderes responsible for the demolition that took place and for the management of the work. Even funny narratives were recorded in the trial statements of witnesses. In one such story it was narrated that one day while Menderes was visiting one of the construction sites he started hiccupping; as he hiccupped people around him understood him to be saying ‘yik’, which means demolish in Turkish; as a result, it was said, the whole street was demolished.45

Menderes denied all of these accusations and he argued that all of the works were carried out on the basis of plans prepared in detail and under the supervision of qualified professionals. He emphasized the importance of the support of the central government in urban planning works and stated that there was no way of achieving these works with the modest budget of the local government.46 In his defense, he referred to Prost frequently and stated that the French planner had worked over a long period on this plan, and a general urban plan had been created as a result of a twenty-year planning process.47

Essentially, the urban planning programme between the years 1956-1960 was conducted by four different offices. The first one of them was founded under the administration of the German professor Hans Högg who had prepared plans for Hannover and Munich previously. Högg, who accomplished his PhD in the early 1930s on the fortresses on the Istanbul and Dardanelles straits, came to Istanbul upon the invitation of the local government in August 1956 and prepared a fifty-five-page report immediately. Later on, Högg was appointed as a consultant of Istanbul Municipality and was given the responsibility of preparing implementation plans based on the work carried out by the Delegation of Advisors. According to Högg, Istanbul was experiencing a transformation similar to that the Baron Haussmann made Paris experience during the reign of Napoleon III. At the end of this process, Istanbul would obtain wide roads that are requirements for modern traffic and “wonderful touristic places”.48 Taking the rapid increase in population into consideration, the German planner suggested the construction of a new network of roads along with the necessary infrastructure works. According to Högg, the population of Istanbul would be up to 3.5 million in the future.49

The second office was founded within the municipality’s Housing Authority and it consisted of a team of 40 architects and engineers. The third office established in the Directorate General of Highways coordinated the technical support given by the institution to the municipality for the urban planning of Istanbul. Lastly, another office was established within the Bank of Provinces to carry out the planning work to be made for Istanbul in 1958. The Italian urban planning professor Luigi Piccinato was appointed as an advisor to the bank’s planning department. Piccinato, who came to Istanbul for the first time in January 1957, presented a report that conveyed to the prime minister his general conclusions on the urban planning of Istanbul. The Italian urban planner said that the latest urban planning works “woke up a city that was sleeping”. According to Piccinato, the urban planning of Istanbul was a difficult work due to its historical character. However, he thought that the city had three important advantages. These were “geographical situation”, “modern expropriation law” and Prime Minister Adnan Menderes’ “big goals”.50

20- By demolishing the old and worn bath house and other buildings on the right
    side of the road in the region where one can enter from Dolmabahçe to Beşiktaş
    Square, they are prevented to block the road and the road was made spacious by
    removing them. Our pictures show the old and narrow state of the road as well as
    its state after demolition works began.”

The laws and regulations that were issued sequentially between 1951 and 1956 constituted the legal framework for Menderes’ urban planning movement. In 1951, the Real Estate Supreme Council of Antiquities and Monuments was founded within the Ministry of National Education. One year later, a special guideline named Real Estate Supreme Council of Antiquities and Monuments Regulations was issued. In 1956, by forming a new Urban Planning Legislation, the deficiencies that it was necessary to fill in the legislation were fixed. With this law, local governments were authorized to operate urban planning operations not only within the borders of the municipalities but also in surrounding areas. In the same year, Istanbul Municipality approved a regulation called Istanbul Urban Planning Regulation. Again in the same year, a new Land Acquisition Act was passed in parliament. With this Act, in which was found many previously existing urban planning regulations and a number of legal instruments, much more flexibility in land acquisition was brought about compared to the past. It was this newly prepared legal legislation that provided the necessary legal basis to initiate the urban planning programme for Menderes and what Prost felt the lack of it throughout his service.51

21- “Our picture shows the old state of the narrow road going from Beşiktaş to
    Ortaköy. Today this is a scene of past.”

Reading the Menderes Period from Today to Past

In May 1960, when the Demokrat Parti was overthrown by a military coup, Istanbul had finally gained wide boulevards as a result of efforts made over a period of 150 years. No doubt Menderes takes his place among those who left the most traces on the city in the long process of the modernization of Istanbul. In other words, the intense efforts that he showed for the urban planning of Istanbul in the last four years of his life caused all of the arrows of criticism to be directed at Menderes. According to common belief today, Menderes is responsible for the significant deterioration of the city’s architectural and cultural heritage. According to this view Menderes had his hands on the urban planning of Istanbul because of his political concerns, to cover up the deteriorated economy and to show his political power to the public using his urban planning programme. Furthermore, Menderes was accused of applying the urban planning programme without following a programme or plan, and without consulting qualified specialists. As described above, most of these opinions need to be examined extensively and questioned. In this context, when the Menderes period is read simultaneously with the late Ottoman and early Republic periods, a deeper picture would emerge. As a result of a reading like this, it is seen that the projects that Menderes carried out overlap largely with the projects inherited from previous periods and actually the projects were based on plans developed over many years and ultimately the works were executed together with many Turkish and foreign experts.

In this context, the limitations of the ‘linear history method’, which is based on cause and effect relationship and which is much in demand among historians, should be mentioned that it brings along. This kind of historiography cannot explain both the special events and facts that occurred in a specific period and simultaneously explain the impact on those events of the historical developments that had been lived in previous periods. As long as only the physical changes in the city are focused on and the social, political and economic environments in which these changes emerged are not referred to, a complete and accurate assessment cannot be made. In this context, it is essential to show how the complex social, economic and political changes that were experienced in the Late Ottoman and Early Republican periods affected the urban planning movements in the 1950s in Istanbul. From this perspective, important people such as Menderes, Prost and Moltke are described in a superficial manner by the historiography of contemporary architecture and the necessity of understanding in a more accurate manner the real role played in the urban planning history by these people becomes clear.

22- The traces and results of the works of development during the period of Adnan Menderes around Millet, Vatan, Ordu, and Unkapanı avenues and in the Historic
    Peninsula up to Topkapı Palace

At this point, particularly the role of Prost in the urban planning of Istanbul needs a new assessment. Today’s history of architecture presents Prost, by comparing him to Menderes, as an urban planner who had sensitive and respectful approaches to Istanbul’s historic fabric. Such an approach needs to be taken cautiously, and in it Prost is kept exempt from the criticism of the results of the urban planning. It is clear that Prost showed attempts to protect and revitalise the massive Ottoman monuments and particularly Istanbul’s Greco-Roman heritage. However, on the other hand, in the matter of the implementation of most of Prost’s proposals, an entirely different reality would appear, in which they would have devastating impact on traditional character of Istanbul. From this perspective, it can even be claimed that Menderes’ urban planning programme was a more humble programme compared to Prost’s radical solutions. Prost had planned new residential areas designed according to modern principles in the historical peninsula, and planned a scheme of wide roads that connected Eminönü Square to Süleymaniye and Sirkeci to the Blue Mosque. According to the proposals of the French planner, even Sandal Bedesten (a part of the Grand Bazaar) was to be turned into a metro station. Prost proposed a radical transportation scheme formed by tunnels and viaducts on the opposite side of the Golden Horn. If it had been implemented, all these projects would have converted the urban structure of Istanbul into a modern city fabric interspersed with historical buildings.

Looking back today, it can be said that both Prost’s proposals containing radical changes and the big road projects implemented by Menderes were harsh approaches that did not take the cultural identity of Istanbul into account as we understand it today. However, it should not be overlooked that both Prost’s and Menderes’ ideas to clear out the areas surrounding the massive mosques and other historical artefacts were quite consistent with their contemporaries. The value given to traditional civil architecture in the mid-20th century in the world was not as it is perceived today. Immediately flammable wooden houses of Istanbul, and its serpentine narrow streets were old-fashioned and they belonged to the past, particularly in the eyes of westernised elites since the late Ottoman period. When Menderes’ urban planning programme was implemented, most of the residential areas in the historical peninsula were in a condition of having been arbitrarily built after fires. Many districts in Istanbul still had not had any properly operating sewage system or proper roads. Due to the fact that the rich and westernised residents of Istanbul moved to the apartment blocks at the other side of the Golden Horn, most of the abandoned buildings were used by those who recently immigrated to the city.

Again, if a retrospective evaluation is to be made, it is obvious that the boulevards that Prost suggested and the boulevards opened in the 1950s to solve the problems of the city were wrong choices. The wide roads opened not only increased speculation in the historical city, it also led the motor vehicle traffic to increase in the city. The wide roads, that brought relief to traffic congestion when they were opened, could not cope with the ever-increasing traffic loads as years passed. At the end of this process, the important avenues in the historical peninsula would turn into junctions through which viaducts and tunnels passed.

On the other hand, it should not be overlooked that these developments experienced in the mid-20th century were not only an issue for Istanbul. After the World War II, the cheap and mass production of cars had brought the cancellation of the tram lines and the construction of new roads in many cities in the world. Cars were considered a relief for people from the fixed timetable of public transportation and were thought to bring flexibility. These various practices would lead to major problems in the future in many cities around the world just as in Istanbul. As a result, as American author Jane Jacobs wrote in the early 1960s, cities were “laboratories”52 where projects were tried, sometimes failed and both successes and failures were experienced. In this context, Istanbul was not an exception either and the radical decisions taken throughout history and the implemented projects did not always bear the desired results.

Finally, maybe the process that has passed since the 1960s should be quickly looked at. The critical question to ask in this context is this: Could an alternative plan be prepared since 1960 after the criticism directed towards Menderes’ urban planning? The answer to be given shortly to this question is no. Undoubtedly, 1960’s population of 2,000,000 has grown enormously and Istanbul has turned into a major metropolis with a population approaching 15 million. But in the issue of the regions forming the core of the city, the plans of Auric, Prost and Menderes still continue to guide the changes in the city. Yenikapı is still an important transportation centre today for Istanbul as in all of the proposals prepared in both Late Ottoman and Early Republic periods. Tarlabaşı Boulevard and the coastal road along the Golden Horn had always been on the agenda but only in the 1980s could they be achieved. The connection of the Bosphorus via bridges and a sub-sea tunnel had been dreamt of continually since the 1870s but could only be achieved in the last 40 years. From this point of view, it can be said that the story of Istanbul’s modernisation that began 200 years ago still continues without interruption and that it is struggling with much more difficult problems today.


1 Even though Menderes was found guilty in the Corruption Expropriation case, he was judged for the crimes allegedly committed in violation of constitutional provisions combined with some other cases given: “İstimlâk Yolsuzluğu Davası Karar Gerekçesi”, Esas nr. 961/8, pp. 43-45.

2 “Turkey to Ratify Highway Pact: U.S. Experts to Help in Program”, The New York Times, January 17, 1948.

3 “Erim’in İzmit’teki Demeci”, Cumhuriyet, September 29, 1949.

4 Murat Gül, Modern İstanbul’un Doğuşu: Bir Kentin Dönüşümü ve Modernizasyonu, Istanbul: Sel Yayıncılık, 2013, p. 154.

5 Nusret K. Köymen, “Kemalizmin Hususiyeleri”, Ülkü, vol. 7, issue 42 (1936), p. 418; Nusret K. Köymen, “Köycülük Esasları”, Ülkü, 1934, vol. 4, issue 20, pp. 149-150.

6 Aykut Kansu, “Tek Parti Döneminde Bir Radikal Muhafazakâr Politika Mektebi Olarak ‘Sosyal Siyaset”’, Modern Türkiye’de Siyasi Düşünce: Muhafazakarlık, ed. Ahmet Çiğdem, Istanbul: İletişim Yayınları, 2003, pp. 622-631.

7 Asım Karaömerlioğlu, “‘People’ Houses and the Cult of Peasant in Turkey”, Turkey before and after Atatürk: Internal and External Affairs, ed. Sylvia Kedourie, London, Portland 1999, pp. 67-91.

8 Sibel Bozdoğan, Modernizm ve Ulusun İnşası: Erken Cumhuriyet Türkiyesi’nde Mimari Kültür, tr. Tuncay Birkan, Istanbul: Metis yayınları, 2002, pp. 115-116.

9 İstanbul Şehri İstatistik Yıllığı: 1953–57, Istanbul: İstanbul Belediyesi Neşriyatı and İstatistik Müdürlüğü Yayınları, 1958, vol. 12.

10 “Seçimler ve İstanbul’un Vaziyeti”, Cumhuriyet, August 28, 1950.

11 “İstanbul Bölge Kalkınma Kongresi Dün Toplandı”, Milliyet, March 11, 1952.

12 “İstanbul’un İmar Planı Şiddetle Tenkid Edildi”, Milliyet, March 12, 1952.

13 İstanbul Belediyesi Genel Meclis Kararı, April 29, 1938.

14 Henri Prost, İstanbul’un Nâzım Planını İzah Eden Rapor, Istanbul: İstanbul Belediyesi, 1938, pp. 3-4.

15 Prost, İstanbul’un Nâzım Planını İzah Eden Rapor, p. 5.

16 Prost, İstanbul’un Nâzım Planını İzah Eden Rapor, p. 9.

17 “İstanbul Belediyesi Meclisi Zabıt Hülâsası”, December 5, 1950, pp. 4-5.

18 “İstanbul Belediyesi Meclisi Zabıt Hülâsası”, December 26, 1950, pp. 7, 12-13.

19 “İstanbul Belediyesi Meclisi Zabıt Hülâsası”, December 26, 1950, pp. 7, 12-13, 15.

20 “İstanbul Belediyesi Meclisi Zabıt Hülâsası”, December 26, 1950, pp. 8-9.

21 İl ve Şehirde Geçen Yılda Neler Yapıldı ve Bu Yıl Neler Yapılıyor 1950–1951, Istanbul: Belediye Matbaası, 1951, pp. 45–47. It includes Prost’s complaints. For the report dated September 28, 1948 see Akif Bazoğlu, “İstanbul İmarında Karşılaşılan Güçlükler ve Şikâyetler”, Arkitekt, vol. 20, issue 7-10 (1950), p. 201.

22 “Prof. Prost’un İmar İşlerine Dair Demeci”, Cumhuriyet, December 19, 1950.

23 Burhan Arif, “İstanbulun Plânı”, Mimar, 1933, issue 5, pp. 154-161.

24 Mimar Abidin, “Memlekette Türk Mimarının Yarınki Vaz’iyeti”, Mimar, issue 5 (1933), pp. 129-130. For more similar opinions see Zeki Sayar, “Yerli ve Yabancı Mimar”, Arkitekt, vol. 8, issue 2 (1938), p. 65.

25 “Revizyon Komisyonu Raporu”, - It was prepared by a Commission that was established to examine the urban plans that H. Prost prepared for the city of Istanbul, Istanbul 1954.

26 İstanbul İmar Planını İzah Raporları I: Beyoğlu Ciheti, Istanbul: Belediye Matbaası, 1954; İstanbul İmar Planını İzah Raporları II: İstanbul Ciheti, Istanbul: Belediye Matbaası,1956.

27 Gül, Modern İstanbul’un Doğuşu, pp. 169-171.

28 İstanbul Ekspres, September 23, 1956; Akşam, Hürriyet, Cumhuriyet newspapers, September 24, 1956.

29 In the forth article of the “Politics of the Municipality” report that Abdullah Efendi presented to Selim III, he pointed out the problems of the city and proposed various solutions: Reşat Kaynar, Mustafa Reşit Paşa ve Tanzimat, Ankara: Türk Tarih Kurumu, 1999, pp. 4-13.

30 Gül, Modern İstanbul’un Doğuşu, p. 71.

31 T.C. Gayrimenkul Eski Eserler ve Anıtlar Yüksek Kurulu Kararları, no. 29, July 8, 1952; no. 413, July 22, 1955; no. 514, July 17, 1956; no. 661, July 8, 1957.

32 Burak Boysan, “Politik Hummanın Silinmeyen İzleri: Halkla İlişkiler Stratejisi Olarak İstanbul’un İmarı”, İstanbul, 1993, issue. 4, p. 85; İlhan Tekeli, “İcabında Plan”, İstanbul, 1993, issue 4, p. 33; Doğan Kuban, İstanbul Bir Kent Tarihi: Bizantion, Konstantinopolis, İstanbul, Istanbul: Türkiye Ekonomik ve Toplumsal Tarih Vakfı, 2000, pp. 392-393; Doğan Kuban, İstanbul Yazıları, prepared by Gülçin İpek, Istanbul: Yapı-Endüstri Merkezi, 1998, p. 232.

33 For a detailed information regarding the Urban Planning Regulation of 1839 see Murat Gül, Richard Lamb, “Mapping, Regularizing and Modernizing Ottoman Istanbul; Aspects of the Genesis of the 1839 Development Policy”, Urban History, vol. 31, issue 3 (2004), pp. 420-436.

34 André Auric, “Rapport General du Service Technique de la Préfecture1”, Génie Civil Ottoman, 1911, vol. 1, issue 1-4; “La Reconstruction de Stamboul”, Génie Civil Ottoman, vol. 1, issue 4-5 (1912).

35 İstanbul Expres, September 23, 1956; Akşam, September 23, 1956.

36 Şevket Rado, “İstanbul’a Hala Güzel Diyebilmek İçin”, Akşam, September 25, 1956.

37 Şevket Rado, “Bütün Güzelliğiyle Süleymaniye”, Akşam, September 26, 1956.

38 “Benevolent Bomber”, Time, August 12, 1957, p. 22–23.

39 Zeki Sayar, “İstanbul’un İmârı Münasebetiyle”, Arkitekt, vol. 25, issue 284 (1956), p. 49.

40 Sıddık S. Onar, “Mahalli Ademi Merkeziyet Prensibi ve İmar İşleri”, Cumhuriyet, July 2, 1957.

41 Boysan, “Politik Hummanın Silinmeyen İzleri”, pp. 84-89; Tekeli, “İcabında Plan”, p. 33.

42 Mükerrem Sarol, Bilinmeyen Menderes, II vol., Istanbul: Kervan Yayınları, 1983, vol.1, p. 109.

43 Boysan, “Politik Hummanın Silinmeyen İzleri”, p. 88; For similar opinions see Kuban, İstanbul Yazıları, p. 231.

44 “İstimlâk Yolsuzluğu Davası Tutanakları”, Esas nr. 961/8, pp. 350-351, 362.

45 “İstimlâk Yolsuzluğu Davası Tutanakları”, p. 176.

46 “İstimlâk Yolsuzluğu Davası Tutanakları”, pp. 385-388.

47 “İstimlâk Yolsuzluğu Davası Tutanakları”, pp. 388-389, 393.

48 “Şehircilik Mütehassısı Högg Dün Geldi”, Cumhuriyet, January 15, 1957.

49 Hans Högg, “Istanbul, Ausschnitte aus der Stadterneuerung”, Baumeister, vol. 58, issue 1 (1961), pp. 33-52.

50 “Prof. Piccinato İstanbul İçin ‘Uyuyan Şehir Uyanmış’ Dedi”, Havadis, January 9, 1957.

51 Gül, Modern İstanbul’un Doğuşu, pp. 203-204.

52 Jane Jacobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, New York: Random House, 1961, p. 6.

This article was translated from Turkish version of History of Istanbul with some editions to be published in a digitalized form in 2019.