Marmaray to be taken as a model in construction of Kanal Istanbul: Minister
ISTANBULThe Marmaray, which connects Istanbul’s European and Asian sides with a tunnel under the Bosphorus, will be taken as a model in the construction of Kanal Istanbul, which foresees the building of a giant new canal on the European side of the city, Transport Minister Ahmet Arslan has said.
Arslan said Kanal Istanbul will be constructed with a system that involves the connection of waters under the canal using the cistern method, similar to the Marmaray tunnel, adding that the ministry is working with State Water Affairs (DSİ) on the project, daily Milliyet reported on April 11.
“It’s just like the Marmaray. The DSİ has brought water from the Melen River and passed it under the Bosphorus. We will make water pass under the canal just like that,” Arslan told reporters in Istanbul.
He added that the construction of bridges will be prioritized in the Kanal Istanbul project.
“As soon as the excavation starts, we will start building the bridges simultaneously. We need to build the bridges first in order for the traffic flow not to be hindered,” he said.
Kanal Istanbul was among the “crazy projects” that then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan promised to realize ahead of the 2011 general election, pledging to build a 43-kilometer-long, 400-meter-wide canal crossed by six bridges.
Saying they had reached the “final stage” regarding plotting the route of Kanal Istanbul, Arslan noted that there are several financing options.
“Depending on the final route, we will form additional freshwater sources including dams. The amount of excavation that will be surfaced is considerable. With the excavation, we have filled plenty of swamps and holes, but there are other spots that need to be filled. Hopefully we’ll fill them and make those areas green. We will build a series of new islands in order to use the land excavated,” he added.
“It’s not like a build-operate-transfer or build-operate system. It’s a massive project. All the formations, including the islands, have to complement each other,” Arslan said.