The Kerkenes Eco center a show case for appropriate housing and sustainable development in rural Turkey

Elias Özkan, Soofia Tahira
Matthieu, Pedergnana
A fast developing country, Turkey faces many challenges including an urgent need for sustainable economic development in rural and remote areas. Villagers in Central Anatolia, where climatic conditions are typified by very cold winters and hot, sunny and dry summers, are migrating to cities where they seek a more comfortable life style. Thus village economies have worsened and buildings have been abandoned. The Kerkenes Eco‐Center, located on the edge of Şahmuratlı Village in central Anatolia, was founded in 2002 as a response to this situation. By bringing together village residents, local and state officials, NGOs, students and academics, the Eco‐Center strives to advocate sustainable rural development and to act as a dynamic experimental base where buildings of traditional and alternative designs can be constructed and monitored. As a response to villagers’ needs for comfort, low‐cost construction, and low‐maintenance buildings “new” designs and techniques, such as straw‐ bale walls, have been introduced while traditional practices such as flat roofs and sun‐drying techniques have been improved. This paper presents the results of research and hands‐on activities which go a long way towards demonstrating the viability of alternative building techniques. Not only is the efficiency of the proposed solutions evaluated, but also the social impact and advantages brought to the village are examined. Buildings within the Kerkenes Eco‐Center are continuously monitored and results analyzed while simulations are used to generate the optimum models for energy efficient designs. New buildings and solutions are implemented according to the results obtained. Hence on‐going studies, including straw‐bale construction, passive solar heating and integrated rocket stoves, make it possible to propose solutions for a sustainable rural life and viable future.
Passive and Low Energy Architecture: Architecture in (R)Evolution (9 - 11 Eylül 2015)


Sustainable development of Turkey: Deployment of geothermal resources for carbon capture, utilization, and storage
Kirli, Mustafa Safa; Fahrioglu, Murat (Informa UK Limited, 2019-07-18)
As a developing country, Turkey's sustainable development objectives converge on robust and sustainable economic development. The increase in its energy and electricity demand is attributed to the growth of population, urbanization, and industrialization parallel to economic and social growth. Instead of fulfilling the obligation to protect the environment arising from international agreements and achieving desired sustainable development, the dependency on imported fossil fuel in electrical energy producti...
Optimal capital structure for build-operate-transfer power projects
Arıcı, Erdem; Arıkan, Metin S.; Department of Civil Engineering (2003)
Observing the deficiencies of traditional methods in meeting the demands of today̕s infrastructure development has been motivating countries towards privatization of these sectors. However, due to the differences in these sectors as compared to other businesses, privatization can not be performed without strict regulations. Today, concession agreements like BOT models seem the best way for solving the problems. Financing of concession agreements plays a key role. In Turkey, most BOT projects are financed by...
Motivators and barriers for green building construction market in Turkey
Gündoğan, Handan; Aydın, İsmail; Altan Sakarya, Ayşe Burcu; Department of Civil Engineering (2012)
‘Green Buildings’ play an important role to increase the implementation of sustainable strategies in the construction industry. Although there is a process of change within Turkish building environment towards implementation of green strategies nowadays, limited research has been conducted to search the reasons that drive the market and the important barriers that block the green building movement. This thesis is intended to fill this gap in the literature and contribute to the field of knowledge regarding ...
Make it a circular city: Experiences and challenges from European cities striving for sustainability through promoting circular making
Coskun, Aykut; Metta, Julie; Bakırlıoğlu, Yekta; Çay, Damla; Bachus, Kris (2022-10-01)
A growing number of cities are deploying circular economy practices to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Makerspaces are community-driven initiatives enabling the collaboration between a city's diverse stakeholders in that objective. They can enhance the citizens' contribution to circularity by engaging them in circular ''making'' activities (e.g., reuse, repair, sharing) and by providing them with novel means, skills, and knowledge in these activities. However, cities face various cha...
Smart and sustainable urban districts: assessment systems and case studies
Özkan Öztürk, Huriye Nur; Elias Özkan, Soofia Tahira; Department of Building Science in Architecture (2017)
The Smart city concept has become an important strategic planning mechanism in past decade or so, with respect to the combination of sustainability, information and communication technologies for urban development in many countries. This study is aimed at an in depth analysis of the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) related to the smart city concept and its applicability to urban neighborhoods. The research is based on case studies in from around the world to determine the instruments of smartness; since th...
Citation Formats
S. T. Elias Özkan and P. Matthieu, “The Kerkenes Eco center a show case for appropriate housing and sustainable development in rural Turkey,” presented at the Passive and Low Energy Architecture: Architecture in (R)Evolution (9 - 11 Eylül 2015), Bologna, İtalya, 2015, Accessed: 00, 2021. [Online]. Available: