Notes on the Geography of Turkey (Istanbul): The Growing Edge of the Metropolis
Istanbul has 8 million people. Or 14 million, depending on how you define the boundary. Here we look at some greenfield residential subdivisions and a town that's just on the western edge of the metropolis.
Luxury apartments about an hour west of Sultan Ahmet by freeway, assuming moderate traffic.
Getting tired of highrises? Want to keep your feet on the ground?
How about a gated community with a grand entranceway with genuine cast-stone lions?
Think we can get in? Ah, you betcha! We'll just say that we're from California.
We're in. And amazingly, there's just about nobody here. The streets are dead empty. Looks like we really do have an American-style gated community, not just physically but socially.
Single-family dwellings. The distant hills are in the path of an urban tidal wave.
Trouble is, there's no diving board. Not even a stainless-steel grill.
Guess we'd better sober up. Here's a statue of Sinan, the great architect. He stares at an arched bridge at Buyuk Cekmece, a town a few miles west of the subdivisions in the previous pictures. Sinan started out as a military engineer; hence his presence here at the bridge.
Parts of Buyuk Cekmece look prosperously modern.
When you think of middle-class Turkey--the Turkey that wants to be part of Europe--this isn't a bad model.
Gates on the downtown streets keep traffic to a minimum.
The shopping streets are pleasant.
The town is connected.
No need for traveller's checks.
In fact, you have to really work to find some trace of the town as it used to be. Here, Ciftlik Street.
Construction methods of those days.
Box-framing with load-bearing masonry.
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