VOL: 9 NO: 2  89-106  2012-2


A review of the modernizing impacts of station approaches in the early Republican period



Sıdıka ÇETİN

Süleyman Demirel University, Faculty of Architecture, Isparta, TURKEY


Received: February 2012             Final Acceptance: November 2012






During the early Republican era, the urban Master Plans implemented in many cities in Turkey, both large and small, played a significant role in the spread of modernization over a wider context. Implemented in the very first years of the Republic and published in such contemporary periodicals as Arkitekt, Municipalities, and Cities and Municipalities, these plans became a hotly debated issue in the world of architecture and the local press. The “modern city” proposed in the Master Plans was, in reality, the key component in the envisaged nation state; and one of the most significant elements of the modern city reflected on the plans was the station approach, which determined the directions of growth of cities at the time.


The intention in this article to investigate to what extent the attitude of the central administration towards the production and regeneration of space was reflected in its own ideology regarding station approaches, the impacts of which are clearly apparent in Anatolian cities. The nation’s station approaches are evaluated in terms of their influence on urban focus, and the representative qualities of the surrounding public buildings and residences, as well as the wide array of meanings best owed by those buildings and their interrelation with each other. In the early years of the Republic, approach roads to mainline railway stations, which determined the direction of growth of cities, reflected the secular and modern national identity in all its aspects, and thus had a symbolic meaning in this regard. Also underlined in this article are the reasons why station approaches may be considered as representative spaces in the Master Plans, the qualities of those streets in previous periods and how they became symbolic as a result of the interventions of the early Republican era.



Keywords: Early Republican period, Station Avenue, urban plan, public square, modernization, representationality


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