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Neighborhood

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For whom: City residents
With whom: Urban Strategy and university students
When: 2012

Neighborhood (3 Vital Touches), is a calling which was organised by the urbanism office `Urban Strategy` and which was voluntarily attended by varied architecture offices. During the Neighborhood Project, through producing ideas and designs on chosen potential urban renewal areas in Istanbul, discussions were run with other participants, contractors and the municipality.  In the workshops which were realized in the summer of 2012, Herkes İçin Mimarlık (Architecture for All) approached the Kadıköy Yoğurtçu Park territory and made a calling both for people who want to be involved in the discussion process and who want to produce projects.

A series of meetings were held with people who wanted to be part of the process. The main theme of the meetings were the current urban renewal policies being applied to several cities, especially to Istanbul. The criticism was focused on how the renewal is applied in a very sudden and externally run manner and made into a potential annuity.

How the renewal is focused on annuity instead of territorial user was prioritised as a mutual criticism. Departing from this point, HiM decided to define a process instead of creating `new` blocks. As the process became defined; territorial properties, public space usage, rate of green spaces, qualities of the physical surrounding (such as width of the streets and height of structures) were analysed and reinterpreted.

What was observed at the end of the process was how the courtyards in the middle of the island of structures, due to reasons such as ownership problems, extreme loudness, periphery effect, got turned into unused lost spaces. The idea of these lost spaces serving the street culture determined the departure point for the building process. `Take from the courtyard, give to the street`. The process was defined by the demolishment of the oldest structures with lowest storeys, without disturbing the continuity of the street pattern, and the building of new structures with optimal storey heights on the newly developed spots. As a follow up, the buildings which expire their lifespan will be getting demolished and new buildings will be getting built within the parameter of the established rules. Depending on the length of the process, varied architectural languages will be born and create a potential for the territory to renew its unique texture.