Balance Lost: What Sustainability?
Free (open access)
325 - 334
M. Soygenis & S. Soygenis
Turkish cities, architecture and lifestyle were all ecology-friendly until the breaking point of transformation of cultural issues, living habits and physical environment. Traditional large families lived in one or two story houses with courtyards where the design of houses and the neighborhoods were utilizing basic design approaches such as proper siting and orientation of buildings, interior and exterior spaces, friendly living with nature taking benefit of the sun, topography and vegetation. After the 1950s, rapid population increase in modern Turkey brought with it problems such as re-structuring of existing traditional environments due to the increasing urban population as a result of migration and urban sprawl. Uncontrolled urban sprawl meant unplanned re-structuring and socalled ‘development’ of existing urban environments. Unfortunately the natural balance of urban and architectural environments were lost during the false urbanization process and authorities including governments, NGO’s and universities in Turkey are now trying to restore the situation with a hope of bringing it back to humane conditions under the name of ‘sustainability’. Considering sustainability is the process of maintaining ecological systems at a certain level indefinitely, in the Turkish case, success is a utopia; or the question is at which level should the environment be maintained? At the level before the 1950s? Keywords: traditional housing, sustainability in Turkish cities, urban fabric, climate responsive architecture. 1 Introduction Monuments, housing and urban spaces in between, together with the natural environment coexisted and formed the grand panorama of cities. While there may be variations, cities are shaped according to these elements. Human beings
traditional housing, sustainability in Turkish cities, urban fabric, climate responsive architecture.