Bayrampasa Former Area Urban Transformation Project
City/Region : Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality , Turkey

The Bayrampasa Project is an urban transformation project. Bayrampasa is a district in Istanbul which has been identified as an earthquake-vulnerable zone. As a result, the Former Prison in Bayrampasa has been demolished and is being replaced with earthquake resistant dwellings. The buildings will be environmentally and eco-friendly and through the project we hope to improve and strengthen neigbourhood ties. The project will bring new living spaces to approximately 10 thousand people who will live in 2.277 dwellings, so this is social project for people who live in risky building is eartquake.

Agendas addressed
Urban mobilityPublic spaceHousing
Local economies and employment
Pathways followed
  • Involve citizens through participatory implementation
  • Encourage local private and civic engagement
  • Capitalise on local economy and production
  • Apply innovative financing approaches
  • Wisely select and apply smart technologies
  • Accelerate sustainability and innovation through public procurement
  • Prepare policies for socio-cultural changes due to innovation

Istanbul is an earthquake-vulnerable city.  Immediately following the Marmara earthquake of 1999, Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality initiated a number of projects to improve the city's quality of life and make it resilient towards a number of urban risks.

146.578 building surveys have been conducted in earthquake-vulnerable districts in order to identify risky buildings in the city. As a result of these studies, Bayrampasa was identified as a priority district and projects have since been developed.

People don't pay if their building needs to be demolished and a new one needs to be built in its place. Also this district does not have enough public amenities such as hospitals, schools, cultural centers, mosques. This project will save their lives and give the city new facilities and public amenities. For more information, visit the project website (in Turkish)  Instragam:ibbbayrampasadonusum Twitter:bayrampasadnsm

In Action

Works have started in line with this purpose by assigning the former prison and the area surrouding it at no cost to Bayrampaşa. it is hoped that the urban transformation of this area will have a domino effect.

The official process of the Bayrampaşa Project started in 2013,  when the former prison was declared a reserve area. The municipality consulted with some of Turkey’s leading architectural firms as well as lots of professionals within the sector. Ideas and projects were developed through organizing stakeholder regarding development in the area. These meetings and consultations lasted until 2014.

After the planning and consultation phase was finialised in 2014, the strategic roadmap and physical, economic and social transformation steps, communication strategies and concept for the area’s urban transformation were prepared between 2014 and 2016. Construction works began in 2016 and life is aimed at beginning in the first quarter of 2019 by delivering certificates of ownership.

The Bayrampaşa Project has been developed by a master plan which was thought of within the context of an Urban Transformation plan prepared primarily throughout the district within the scope of a sustainable urban transformation approach.

In the direction of principles brought by upper scale planning, the project area has started to implementn by a new transformation model as ‘’Produce & Transfer & Evacuate’’ in accordance with the principle of transformation in-situ. The ‘’Produce & Transfer & Evacuate’’ model doesn’t bring an extra density/population to the city, new social infrastructure areas are built while current floor area ratio is more decreased.

These social infrasucture areas are 46.300 m2 in total which are urban square, mosque, culture center, commercial street, hospital, school, marketplace, sport areas, cycle lanes, library, edding-ceremony hall, house of condolence, Ismek education center, kindergarten, exhibition area and walking trails.

This social Service Project is developed and build by Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality. And the project is administrated by strategic roadmap with multi-stakeholders, multidisciplinary, equal and transparent administration model. It is carried out under administration Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, Ministry of Environment and Urbanization, Public Hospitals Administration of Turkey, Bayrampasa District Municipality.The project is carried out by Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality’s equities without profit making purpose which also subsidizes itself. Thus the project will minimize urban transformation concerns among the local community.


The project is still under contruction (Building and Citizen Reconciliation) but is expected to finish in December 2019.

People will be given owenership rites to new dwellings in the area in the first quater of 2019. The municipality has been in contact with the citizen who live in this area and the citizens are very happy, because they will have urban squares, mosques, cultural centers, a commercial district, hospital, schools, marketplace, sport areas, cycle lanes, library, wedding-ceremony hall, Ismek education center, kindergarten, exhibition area and walking trails.

Citizen will move from their old dwellings to the new dwellings. Also Another important characteristic of the project is having implementations in the direction of sustainable environment understanding.

Another interesting and important aspect of the project is its environmental nature - it will include Photovoltaic Solar Panels, smart waste collection systems, smart water meters, smart building monitoring sensors, electric vehicle and e-bike charging stations, central heating, eco-building exterior facades, cycle stand and bike rental system, smart and sensor-fitted lighting system, smart emergency systems, new subway station  and parking lots, and the buildings will receive green building certificates.

The urban transformation project conducted by Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality in Bayrampaşa's Former Prison Area will be a new living space for approximately 10 thousand people who will live in 2.277 dwellings. A 100-percent agreement ratio was aimed by being paid attention one by one to each property owner, while construction of these building are proceeding.

And project will be sample locality for our start-up project "Structural Health Monitoring".  Structural health monitoring is an extremely important methodology in evaluating the ‘health’ of a structure by assessing the level of deterioration and remaining service life of civil infrastructure systems. We will try many building and one of the sample is Bayrampasa


Through this project many people (approx. 10.000 person) will live in earthquake resilient buildings. After this project,  the Municipality will begin work in a neighbouring district to ensure the sustainable urban transformation of our city. The aim is to ensure 30.000 person will live in similar housing.

On the other hand this project has many sustainable environment practices like waste collection system, electricity use produced by solar panels in buildings, establishment of charging stations and infrastructure at parking lots, eco-friendly urban furniture at landscape areas, smart lighting system, smart water meters will be implemented and Green Building Certificate recognized internationally will be received,so this project will protect the ecology.

Also this project will bring new employment opportunities to the region. For example there will be employment opportunities made available in hospitals, schools, cultural centers etc. Also, this district will receive a new metor station, allowing people to travel to the hospital, schools, or home without the need of a car.

Challenges and lessons learned

The planning phase of the project was carried out between 2013 and 2016. And the project began in 2016. But Before 2013, Municipality has many works.  Megacity Indicator System for Disaster Risk Management, The Istanbul Earthquake Master Plan made a sign in Bayrampasa that are must be transformation. Municipality decided to transform the prison area to reserve area for new urban transformation building. So it works about transformation model, finance model, strategic route, social transformation, economical transformation, sustainable environment, employment model and contruction. This works suitable for UNDP (United Nations Development Programme) Target 11-Sustainable Cities and Habitats, Project based Law No 6306 Prevention of Disaster Legislation and Law No 5393 Urban Transformation and Redevelopment Legislation.



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