PM Erdoğan heralds new Istanbul airport
ISTANBUL- Hürriyet Daily News
PM Erdoğan (C) and Doğan Holding honorary chairman Aydın Doğan (4th L) cuts the ribbon at the opening ceremony of the Trump Towers Mall. PM’s wife Emine Erdoğan and members of Doğan family accompany them. DAILY NEWS photo, Emrah GÜREL
The government plans to build an airport, capable of holding 100 million people, in Istanbul, said Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan during a ceremony marking the opening of the Trump Towers’ Mall, a large shopping center in Istanbul’s Mecidiyeköy district.
Adding a third airport to Istanbul is one of the city’s hottest issues as Atatürk International Airport, located on the European side, and Sabiha Gökçen Airport on the Asian side currently work at full capacity during the high season.
At the ceremony Erdoğan thanked those involved with Trump Towers, a $400 million project. “Starting with Ortadoğu Otomotiv and D-Yapı, I would like to thank, on behalf of my country and nation, everyone from architectures to mechanics, from contractors to workers,” he said.
The two towers launch a new period for both the district and Istanbul with its architecture and [the] services it offers, Erdoğan said.
“As I have learnt from Aydın Doğan, some 80 percent of the residences and offices at the Trump Towers are full already,” Erdoğan said, adding that this fact showed that those who invest in Turkey win.
The prime minister said he was particularly happy with the fact that the mall prioritized children and families. The mall dedicates one whole floor — 8,000 square meters — to children.
“I congratulate the management, Doğan family and its partners,” Erdoğan said.
The project is a joint venture by Trump’s real estate branch and D-Yapı, a subsidiary of Doğan Holding.
Doğan: First in Europe
The Trump Towers license for the project was a first across Europe, said Doğan, who serves as the honorary chairman of Doğan.
“The people who will work at these buildings and the ones [who will] visit the shopping mall here will find a unique mass transportation opportunity incomparable to anywhere else,” he said, calling the project a “moderate contribution to the urban transformation project launched by Prime Minister Erdoğan.”
The facility will offer jobs for some 2,000 people, Doğan said.
PM Erdoğan’s wife Emine Erdoğan, Aydın Doğan’s wife Sema Doğan, Deputy PM Beşir Atalay, İstanbul Gov. Hüseyin Avni Mutlu, İstanbul Mayor Kadir Topbaş, Doğan Holding Chairwoman Begümhan Doğan Faralyalı, Doğan TV Holding Chairwoman Arzuhan Doğan Yalçındağ, Hürriyet Gazetecilik Chairwoman Vuslat Doğan Sabancı, Doğan Online Chairwoman Hanzade Doğan Boyner, Doğan Holding Board Member Mehmet Ali Yalçındağ joined PM Erdoğan and Aydın Doğan during the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Trump Chief Executive Officer Donald Trump and Trump’s real estate development chairperson, Ivanka Marie Trump, were scheduled to arrive in Istanbul today and join a press conference in the morning at the Trump Towers Mall. Aydın Doğan and Doğan Holding Executive Board Member Mehmet Ali Yalçındağ and D Yapı General Manager İlder Tokcan are also scheduled to attend the meeting.
The Trump Towers Mall features around 175 different stores, introducing Turkish and global brands.
New projects for Istanbul
Speaking on new Istanbul projects, Erdoğan said Turkish companies had already started investing in the city’s new finance center on the Asian side, adding that this activity was all part of a broader city plan.
The government is determined to improve the outlook of the Bosphorus, finalize the Galataport, Haydarpaşa and Yassıada projects and connect the Marmara Sea and the Black Sea with an artificial canal of around 45-50 kilometers, one of his promises before the parliamentary elections on June 12, 2011. The plan includes building up two cities with a population of 1 million each on the two sides of the canal, Erdoğan said.