The Conflict Between Material and Moral The Story of a Vanishing Industrial Heritage in Ankara

There is an increasing tendency of people and cities towards what is new, which can be explained as a natural outcome of the contemporary socio-economic structure. However, when this tendency shows itself on specific urban spaces,that are valuable for the past and identity of cities and societies, a decision between the new and old should be made. This mostly causes a conflict between the intangible - e.g. value, existence, identity, and the tangible – e.g. money, productivity, economic benefit- loss. This paper discusses this contreversial issue under the case of the demolishment of an industrial heritage in the city of Ankara/Turkey. As many of the modern cities Ankara suffers from the several imposing spatial initiatives and laws that are changing the cityscape drastically. The historical and cultural beings are slowly being shadowed by the high-rise buildings. Maltepe Airgas Factory is a recent example of what has being replaced by a consumption-based structure. This factory had been built as one of the first industrial buildings of a young republic 80 years ago. Despite the fact that Maltepe Airgas factory was a listed industrial heritage and an integral element of a larger unit, its age and loss of function were put forward as the reasons for its demolishment. Unlike this serious loss of Ankara, the industrial heritages should be seen substantial for their significant role in the development of cities, history of art and arhitecture and their contributions to the urban silhouette (Altınoluk, 1998). Besides spatial concerns, the economic dimension of this process is noteworthy, since the “old” factory had been replaced by a “new”,” profit making” structure. It is clear that local governments prefer profit-making projects rather than long-term and multi-disciplanary refunctioning processes. This proves the argument of Spearritt (2008) who claims that the preservation of any industrial heritage is more about the money and pleasure rather than history and culture. In this perspective, the history of the airgas factory, its importance in cultural and spatial contexts will be explored, and the process till the demolishment will be evaluated. Since the tension between the old and new matters, other similar projects will be discussed in terms of design and economy.
AESOP/ ACSP Joint Congress


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Citation Formats
D. Cihanger Medeıros Rıbeıro, “The Conflict Between Material and Moral The Story of a Vanishing Industrial Heritage in Ankara,” presented at the AESOP/ ACSP Joint Congress, Dublin, İrlanda, 2014, Accessed: 00, 2021. [Online]. Available: