Turkey to give Sultanahmet area a facelift

The Sultanahmet district in İstanbul will be made more visitor-friendly with a new, specially designed granite stone paving project for the area.

Turkey to give Sultanahmet area a facelift

World Bulletin / News Desk

The Sultanahmet district in İstanbul will be made more visitor-friendly with a new, specially designed granite stone paving project for the area, the Fatih Municipality has announced.

Fatih Mayor Mustafa Demir said on Monday that the project will be completed within five months, before the start of next year's peak tourist season.

The project will be carried out with funding from the İstanbul 2010 European Capital of Culture Agency.

The tourist district was closed to vehicle traffic earlier this year as part of another project by the İstanbul Metropolitan Municipality Transportation Coordination Center (UKOME) to create more space and comfortable areas for visitors.

“There are currently eight different zones paved with eight different types of stone in the area, without any harmony between them,” said Demir, explaining the rationale behind this project.

“This paving project will encircle the Hippodrome of Constantinople. This area spans from the two ancient obelisks to Hagia Sophia and from the Sultanahmet Mosque to the end of the Kabasakal Avenue. There used to be cobblestoned paving almost everywhere on our historic peninsula. Those cobblestones were creating problems for vehicles but they were also not so comfortable to walk on for pedestrians. We are laying granite pavers similar to the cobblestones, but it will be much more comfortable to walk on. When it is finished, the area will look good and the new ground will perfectly match the surrounding historic wonders,” Demir said.

The cost of the project is estimated at TL 7 million.

“Our prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has shown a personal interest in the details of this project and attaches particular importance to it,” Demir said, explaining how Erdoğan, who was the former mayor of İstanbul, is also taking an interest in the project.

Last Mod: 06 Aralık 2010, 17:06
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