Twenty-six buildings evacuated in Istanbul’s Kağıthane

Twenty-six buildings evacuated in Istanbul’s Kağıthane

Twenty-six buildings evacuated in Istanbul’s Kağıthane

Twenty-six buildings located near a four-story building that collapsed in Istanbul’s Kağıthane district have been evacuated as a safety precaution, said Environment and Urbanization Minister Murat Kurum.

“We are hosting our [evacuated] citizens at guesthouses and hotels. We are undertaking every kind of help and support for them within the coordination of our Kağıthane Municipality and our Governor’s Office,” Kurum told reporters on April 24. 

The four-story building collapsed April 22 after a retaining wall at an adjacent construction site crumbled apart. Authorities ordered the evacuation of the nearby buildings and cordoned off the area.

Kurum said that the provincial directorate of the ministry has filed a criminal complaint against the firm that is responsible for the faulty retaining wall.

“The prosecutor’s office will undertake the necessary analysis. If the firm is at fault, what is necessary will be undertaken through the prosecutor’s office regarding the problems stemming from this construction it did,” Kurum said.

The incident comes more than two months after a seven-story block collapsed in the Kartal district on the Asian side of the city on Feb. 6.

Twenty-one out of the 35 residents in the building died after becoming trapped under the debris. There other 14 were rescued and hospitalized.

“You know that an accident happened in Kartal before. What is gladsome here [regarding the collapse in Kağıthane] is that none of our citizens lost their lives,” Kurum said.

Authorities will evaluate all of the retaining walls in Istanbul’s districts to try to prevent other buildings from collapsing, he said.

A technical study will identify structural risks at 68 buildings containing 600 homes in the area where the building collapsed in Kağıthane district. Buildings at risk will be demolished, and the information from the study will be used to design an urban transformation project in the area, Kurum said.