Demolition ....can't happen here!

The photo above is for Ayazma, a geçekondu or an informal neighborhood founded by migrants to Istanbul around 1980s. In the 2002s the land were the neighborhood is located became super valuable as a result of the construction of important highways and the Olympic stadium. Due to this rising land value, the neighborhood was demolished as a part of a urban regeneration plan in 2004, ironically after two years of being connected to the public water network! Currently a giant housing project called My World Ayazma is being built by a company called Ağaoğlu on the demolition site. In 2007, those residents how had the tenure right were relocated to Bezirganbahçe, housing project consisting of 55 blocks 11 stories high with 49 apartments each that fits 2640 residences constructed by TOKI (the Mass Housing Administration, directly under the control of the Prime Ministry ) !

A similar scenario occurred in Egypt around 1998 when the Cairo governarate force evicted 300-350 families living in the neighborhood called Fakhariya (Potteries) located behind the famous mosque of 'Amr Ibn Al-'As in what was called urban development blitzkrieg
As much as this act of clearance had a similar devastating effect it had on the residents of Ayazma who lost their homes and livelihoods, but W.J. Dorman suggests that this is not the norm in the case of Cairo as the in formal housing sector is considered highly resilient. This assumption is supported by relative tolerance of the Egyptian state towards the informal areas and not choosing the option of massive scale demolition. This can be due to the strong bottom up resistance within these neighborhoods to urban transformation and this is very similar to the urban social movements rising through Istanbul struggling against the urban transformation plans imposed by the state. The other explanation in the Egyptian case is the lack of the capacity, maybe because all the resources are directed to luxurious housing for upper middle classes, to construct sufficient housing projects same as the ones constructed by TOKI to relocate evicted people to!

From Ayazma to Bezirganbahçe by Cihan Uzunçarsili Baysal in Refuge Urbanism: IABR workshop in Istanbul
Of Demolitions and Donors by W.J.Dorman in Cairo Contested  

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The people from the barrio built the city twice: during the day we built the houses of the well-off. At night and at weekends, with solidarity, we built our own homes, our barrio.

  —Andrés Antillano, resident of Caracas, April 15, 2004