Dinosaur statue to replace ‘Transformers’ robot in Ankara

Dinosaur statue to replace ‘Transformers’ robot in Ankara

Dinosaur statue to replace ‘Transformers’ robot in Ankara

Ankara's Transformers-esque robot (L) and Mayor Melih Gökçek with a dinosaur statue at AnkaPark (R).

The Turkish capital’s eccentric mayor has announced the municipality will install a dinosaur statue to replace the controversial Transformers-esque robot at a road intersection in the city, because it “got on the leftists’ nerves.”

Mayor Melih Gökçek from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) sent a series of tweets late April 16 and announced the municipality’s decision to replace the statue in Ankara. Before sharing photos of possible dinosaur replacements for the robot, Gökçek sarcastically said he particularly wanted to hear the opinion of the Ankara Chamber of Architects.

The metal-polyester robot was erected on the main road intersection of the Atatürk Forest Farm in the Turkish capital on April 2, as part of promotion for a new theme park, AnkaPark, which has been described as a “prestige project” by Gökçek.

The construction of the park has been partly halted after a court ruling declared it illegal over an objection by the Chamber of Architects, irking the controversial Gökçek.

“Dear twit universe, which dinosaur should be put to replace the otorobot? Please help the Chamber of Architects,” Gökçek said in a tweet on April 16.

“Autobots” are a faction of sentient robots led by “Optimus Prime” and the main protagonists in the fictional universe of the Transformers film series. 

Although Gökçek referred to Transformers several times when talking about the robot, AnkaPark omitted such a reference due to copyright issues.

After evaluating the results of his Twitter survey, Gökçek then announced that Dinosaur Number 7 has been picked. "Let's find it a name now," he said in another tweet.

Dinosaur statue to replace ‘Transformers’ robot in Ankara

The road intersection where the AnkaPark robot now stands is a few kilometers from the new presidential palace, which recently started witnessing its own “spectacular” show thanks to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s welcoming of foreign leaders flanked by actors dressed in the military costumes of 16 states founded throughout history by Turks.

Ankara’s Chamber of Architects has so far filed legal complaints on AnkaPark and the robot statue, as well as the new presidential palace.