Damaged buildings near metro construction evacuated in central Istanbul
Fatma Aksu – ISTANBUL
DHA photoSeven buildings have been evacuated in Istanbul’s Üsküdar district after the nearby construction of a metro line allegedly caused cracks to the interior and exterior of the buildings, forcing residents to move into hotels, daily Hürriyet reported on July 28.
The buildings located on Sabahattin İskele Street in Üsküdar were evacuated and residents were placed in hotels by Doğuş Construction, the company running the metro line construction, after residents made complaints over the cracks in their homes on July 26, with some saying the residents had been told to not speak to the media.
Both ends of the street were taped off for security reasons, as huge cracks and other signs of damage were seen in the homes located near Üsküdar’s popular Doğancılar Street.
Residents were not permitted to take additional belongings after their evacuation and warning signs were placed at the entries of the evacuated buildings, according to one resident.
“Our building suffered damage because of the metro construction. We are told that the damage was caused by geological reasons. We have been placed in hotels. Our building has [suffered] great damage. We were allowed only to take possessions out, and then entry to the buildings was denied,” said İsmail Odabaş, a resident from one of the evacuated buildings.
An official from Doğuş Construction said there was no major problem with the buildings and the buildings were evacuated as a safety measure.
“Cracks in the walls occurred [due to] underground water, so we evacuated the residents and placed them in hotels as a safety measure. The [Üsküdar] Municipality officials and geology experts have launched an inspection of the area,” the official said.
The incident came about a month after three buildings on Üsküdar’s Şeyh Cami Street were evacuated because of restoration work. The residents of the three buildings said cracks had formed in the walls both inside and outside their homes due to a consolidation of the buildings’ bases with concrete, which was laid down as part of the restoration work.