Evaluating the impacts of possible outcomes on urban design projects : three layers of Taksim Square and Gezi Park, Istanbul

Kubat, Ayse Sema and Eskidemir, Kahraman; (2022) Evaluating the impacts of possible outcomes on urban design projects : three layers of Taksim Square and Gezi Park, Istanbul. In: Annual Conference Proceedings of the XXVIII International Seminar on Urban Form. University of Strathclyde Publishing, Glasgow, pp. 1142-1150. ISBN 9781914241161

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Taksim Square and Gezi Park, have been one of the unique places to study social and spatial layout change throughout the history. Taksim as a political and social beating heart of Istanbul, it has been the subject of a never-ending cycle about urban design decisions. Currently the underground tunnel system is open to traffic and pedestrianized Taksim square, which is a vast concrete space awaits for an urban design project since 2013. The construction In March 2020, Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, declared a contest for an urban design project in Taksim. Between 146 applications, only 3 projects were allocated design equivalent award. These three projects are unique in their space production with different urban design solutions. While the winner project, brings a new layer to the top of the area with a pedestrian bridge, one of the equivalents proposes a pothole to link the square and underground from different point of view. On the other hand, the third equivalent, brings back the old design choices with more green utilization. In this paper, the urban space design of different proposals are evaluated with a mathematical method, Space Syntax technique. Firstly, axial and segments maps are created from three proposals to create syntactic maps and measures. The analytical methods of Space Syntax are used for comparison to better understand how the morphological characteristics of Taksim would be changed with these proposals. Axial maps, segment maps, visual graph analyses and correlation graphs are used to prepare the models of measures: Integration HH and different R values, choice, synergy and visual integration in DepthMap. It is believed that this study contributes for contributors and municipality during implementation of the design. This study also shows the potential of Space Syntax for testing proposals and situations during urban design process.

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