Top court approves destruction of Istanbul’s silhouette-spoiling skyscrapers
Pictures of the 37, 32 and 27 storey residences built near the Marmara coast in the Zeytinburnu district rising behind the minarets of the Süleymaniye Mosque caused a public outcry when they were published by daily Radikal in 2011.Turkey’s top administrative court has upheld a ruling imposing the destruction of a group of skyscrapers that ruined the iconic panorama of Istanbul’s historic center, when looked at from across the Bosphorus.
The Council of State ruled on May 28 that a previous decision adopted by a local court last year was in line with the law and adequate procedures, lawyers said Aug. 20. They also added that a complaint had been filed against municipality workers for not implementing the decision in due time.
“The Council of State’s ruling is binding and final. All legal paths have been exhausted as there are no more appeal instances left. We are expecting the municipality to implement the decision as soon as possible,” said lawyer Cihat Gökdemir.
Pictures of the 37, 32 and 27 storey residences built near the Marmara coast in the Zeytinburnu district rising behind the minarets of the Süleymaniye Mosque caused a public outcry when they were published by daily Radikal in 2011. Despite the controversy, the construction was completed and the apartments were sold.
However, in April 2013, Prime Minister and President-elect Recep Tayyip Erdoğan added his voice to the criticism, publically declaring his anger at the owners of the constructions for not accepting his suggestion to trim the buildings.
Despite Erdoğan’s professed preference for “horizontal buildings,” tall buildings projects in Istanbul and across have surged under the ruling Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) period in power, including in the government’s much-vaunted urban transformation policy.