Impact assessment of major urban interventions on the cultural heritage of Fener and Balat Districts

Dinler, Mesut
Fener and Balat districts are two neighboring historic districts significant with their urban pattern constituted throughout history, authentic features in the buildings/monuments/city walls and being located within the boundaries of Golden Horn, integration with their social and physical environment. What makes Fener and Balat districts a unique case is that urban interventions have been continuously implemented in these districts starting from mid-1980s. First one of these interventions is Golden Horn Coastal Rearrangement Project which aims cleaning of Golden Horn that was an industrial zone suffering from rapid migration and environmental pollution. Second one is Fener and Balat Districts Rehabilitation Program that was planned to be a pilot project for Turkey. It was financed by European Union and the aim was rehabilitation of physical and social environment together. The third project came when the second one was still being implemented; Fener Balat Ayvansaray Urban Renewal Project. It was an example of urban renewal projects began to be implemented in historic environments after legislation changes introduced to conservation practice started in 2004. The aim of this study is to understand and define the significance of Fener and Balat districts and to analyze how each project intervened to cultural heritage in Fener and Balat districts, in other words to analyze how each project effected the conservation of Fener and Balat districts. By doing such an analysis it is aimed to understand different urban conservation approaches –perception, conception and management of conservation- that affected the cultural heritage of Fener and Balat districts.