VOL: 8  NO: 1  68-84   2011-1


Parallel Routes: Proposals for large scale projects in the centres of Athens and Istanbul at the beginning of the twentieth century



Emmanuel V. MARMARAS, Savvas E. TSILENIS

The Department of Architecture, Technical University of Crete, GREECE

Received: July 2010            Final Acceptance: April 2011



In the beginning of the twentieth century the governments of the two neighbors‟ countries, the Ottoman Empire and the Kingdom of Greece, proceeded in planning Large Scale Modernization projects in the centres of their capital cities. These projects never materialized due to the dramatic change of the general historical and political circumstances that followed the First World War. In Athens under the framework of two commissioned Urban Plans to the German town planner Hoffmann (1910), as well as to the British one Mawson (1914), large scale interventions were proposed aiming at the „westernization‟ of the Greek capital. In juxtaposition, in Istanbul Sultan Abdul Hamit II asks for plans to reform and beautify the capital the first decade of the twentieth century from the following architects and engineers: Ferdinand Arnondin, “the Strom, Lindman & Hilliker company”, and the architect of Paris Town Hall, J. A. Bouvard. The objective was the construction of bridges, a subway, and the reformation of central city squares. Aim of this paper is to reveal the similarities and differences between these two parallel government actions.



Keywords:  Large-scale projects, modernization, planning history, Athens, Istanbul


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