GENOUD Alice – The bostan of Kuzguncuk, an example of urban green resistance in Istanbul
Alice GENOUD (2016). Mémoire de Master (Université de Lausanne, Faculté des géosciences et de l’environnement) sous la direction de Prof. René Véron
The Gezi Park events are the best known examples of demonstrations against a project of urban renewal in Istanbul but this policy of densification on behalf of modernization led to the creation of many local protestation groups, which aimed to preserve their neighborhood. This can be seen as a desperate process, as the municipality of Istanbul did not pay attention to these movements and used violence to try to stop them. It is difficult to imagine the future of the City, squeezed between the desire of its authorities to attain this goal of global economical center and the one of some of its inhabitants to keep the “soul” of their city, and who are afraid of the potential destruction produced by this urban renewal. This problematical dichotomy can be seen as a major problem for Istanbul even if the centralized power seems to not pay attention to it.
This master’s thesis will focus on this question of the different visions of Stamboulite society concerning the city, which are battling against one another with a point of interest on the question of green areas. Our fieldwork concerns the Neighborhood of Kuzguncuk, which is situated on the Asian side of the Bosphorus. This peaceful neighborhood of 5000 inhabitants has been the theater of a 20 years struggle between the authorities and the people of the neighborhood concerning a green area present in the center of the district.