Istanbul split in two

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Istanbul split in two


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Old 22nd April 2011, 11:15 AM
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Default Istanbul split in two

The European and Asian sides of Istanbul across the Bosphorus strait could be divided to make the huge conurbation easier to govern under the prime minister's proposal. Photograph: Osman Orsal/Reuters
Istanbul is renowned as the place where east meets west, the only city in the world, in straddling the Bosphorus, situated in two continents, Europe and Asia. But it may soon lose this unique status if the Turkish government goes ahead with a plan to divide it in two.

The prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, a former Istanbul mayor, has announced what he described as a "wild project" to split the city into European and Asian sides to make it easier to govern.


You can read the rest of the article Istanbul could be split in two, says Turkish prime minister | World news | The Guardian

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Old 8th May 2011, 09:58 PM
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Sounds wrong to me from a historical and cultural point of view.

Surely it could be governed as one city, with sub - councils for different areas.

Wonder what locals think of this propsal?

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Old 1st June 2011, 01:16 PM
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It is currently governed by village (neighbourhood) councils. It's just too damn hard, I guess. The real problem is that Istanbul is the preeminent source of employment for the entire country. People are moving in there all the time. It's hard to control water, social/civic services, and all manner of other things. I agree, as a historian, that it would be sad for the city to be split, certainly the end of a very long era. It's supposed to be the bridge between Europe and the Middle East. However, it might be necessary for the benefit of those who live there today. I would also say this: for most of Istanbul's history there was relatively little on the Asian side of the Bosphorus.

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Old 1st June 2011, 01:29 PM
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I don't see this happen really. Maybe some more autonomy will be given to the local municipality councils but I don't see the metropolis formall dividing in two. It may further sprawl, making even more suburbs become part of Istanbul. That I think is more likely than to split it in two cities.

The population if Istanbul is above 15000000, apparently close to 18000000, even when the census gives a lower number. The thing is, count in the businessmen and students who officially live elsewhere but in practise spend 90% of the year in Istanbul, and the number of residents is several millions higher than what the census tells. In reality it is well above the 15000000, I heard approaching the 18000000. One of the many things I love about it (i love big cities) although indeed governing it without dividing duties to local councils is a mission impossible. Still, I see the latter options happen more likely than a true split of the European and Asian parts.

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Old 1st June 2011, 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by ExitStrategy View Post
It is currently governed by village (neighbourhood) councils. It's just too damn hard, I guess. The real problem is that Istanbul is the preeminent source of employment for the entire country. People are moving in there all the time. It's hard to control water, social/civic services, and all manner of other things. I agree, as a historian, that it would be sad for the city to be split, certainly the end of a very long era. It's supposed to be the bridge between Europe and the Middle East. However, it might be necessary for the benefit of those who live there today. I would also say this: for most of Istanbul's history there was relatively little on the Asian side of the Bosphorus.
The area where I lived, Maltepe-Kartal, was 40 minutes bus drive to the ferry to the European part that's how far the city has sprawled on the Asian side. It is indeed absorbing more and more parts into the city. The likes of Kartal were small villages 100 years ago, now they are very urbanised parts of the city. Maybe far out of the center, but still. The city keeps on growing, just like the population numbers. But most of those newly added areas have local councils who do part of the governing. So I doubt it will lead to dividing the city in 2.

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Old 5th August 2011, 06:29 PM
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Originally Posted by gerrit View Post
I don't see this happen really. Maybe some more autonomy will be given to the local municipality councils but I don't see the metropolis formall dividing in two. It may further sprawl, making even more suburbs become part of Istanbul. That I think is more likely than to split it in two cities.

The population if Istanbul is above 15000000, apparently close to 18000000, even when the census gives a lower number. The thing is, count in the businessmen and students who officially live elsewhere but in practise spend 90% of the year in Istanbul, and the number of residents is several millions higher than what the census tells. In reality it is well above the 15000000, I heard approaching the 18000000. One of the many things I love about it (i love big cities) although indeed governing it without dividing duties to local councils is a mission impossible. Still, I see the latter options happen more likely than a true split of the European and Asian parts.
Just popped in for a nose from NZ as I used to work in Istanbul occasionally (I love this global travelling via the Internet) and had forgotten how bit it was. But that was 10 years ago and I guess it's grown some more! With NZ's population of 4.3 million, we're one quarter the population of Istanbul. That puts it into perspective!

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