AKM restoration tender signed
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
AKM stands in Istanbul's Taksim SquareWork has started on the restoration of Istanbul’s Atatürk Culture Center (AKM), following the bidding process, according to daily Hürriyet.
The government had put out the tender process for the restoration of the center on April 9. Competition for the tender took place between 15 firms, and was won by a partnership of Yeni Yapı-Taca with a bid of 70 million Turkish Liras. The winning bidders have previously restored the Muhsin Ertuğrul Theatre and the Haliç Congress Center. The government wanted the restoration of the building to be completed after 540 days.
Earlier, the Sabancı Foundation also signed a restoration agreement with the government for the AKM. As such, Sabancı Foundation will provide 30 million liras to contribute to the project.
The AKM stopped hosting plays in June 2008. When the project went out to tender on June 29, 2009 the most suitable bidder was invited to sign a contract on July 22, 2009. However, the Culture, Art and Tourism Laborers’ Union (Kültür Sanat-Sen) filed a suit against the Culture and Tourism Ministry over the cancelation of the project. With the court’s order to halt development, the Istanbul 2010 European Capital of Culture Agency stopped all works related to the restoration of AKM.
The agency brought together representatives from the State Theaters General Directorate, State Opera and Ballet General Directorate, professional organizations and the architects of the project to discuss the demands for AKM. The project was revised, approved by the ministry and then presented to the Council of Preservation.
Despite the reconciliation, Kültür Sanat-Sen did not withdraw the lawsuit and the council did not receive the project for consideration.
The court cancelled the project in its decision May 16, 2009, and the Istanbul 2010 European Capital of Culture Agency stopped all restoration plans.