Istanbul cancels order of six new ferries after widespread criticism
ISTANBUL – Doğan News Agency
The Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality has cancelled its order of six new ferries following widespread criticism of the ferries’ modern design, Doğan News Agency has reported.
Four new double-ended ferries were introduced to Istanbul’s ferry fleet over the summer of 2015. The municipality’s plan was to build up a 10-ship fleet with the arrival of six new ships with the same modern design.
Despite the ships’ technical advantages in terms of speed, eco-friendliness and accessibility for disabled users, they faced widespread criticism over their untraditional and modern appearance.
Istanbul Mayor Kadir Topbaş has now reportedly decided to cancel orders of the remaining six ferries due to join the fleet and ordered the construction of six new ships with designs similar to Istanbul’s iconic ferries.
Another contributing factor to the public’s negative reaction to the ships was a 2013 pledge by Topbaş to consult Istanbul locals “on all projects.”
Back in June 2006, Istanbul residents were asked to choose their favorite model from eight different ferry designs. In that vote, 40 percent opted for the classical design while 33 percent opted for the modern ferry.
Again, in 2011, residents were consulted before choosing the color of new public buses.
However, the controversial new double-ended ferries were initially announced by Topbaş on Feb. 5, without any prior consultation with the city’s residents.
After launching, the new ferries were also criticized by users for tossing around during stormy weather.
They had been designed by the research and development department of Istanbul’s municipal Şehir Hatları boat company at a total cost of 13.5 million euros.
A picture of one of Istanbul's iconic ferries.