Vol. 16 No. 3 (2019): Poiesis: to create

Residents' experiences of a gentrified neighborhood in Istanbul: The case of Akaretler row houses

Mehmet Ronael
Graduate School of Science Engineering and Technology, Istanbul Technical University, Istanbul, Turkey
Gulden Oruc
Urban and Regional Planning Department, Faculty of Architecture, Istanbul Technical University, Istanbul, Turkey

Published 2019-11-05


  • Akaretler row houses,
  • Commercial gentrification,
  • Istanbul,
  • Neighborhood change,
  • Residents experience.

How to Cite

Ronael, M., & Oruc, G. (2019). Residents’ experiences of a gentrified neighborhood in Istanbul: The case of Akaretler row houses. A|Z ITU JOURNAL OF THE FACULTY OF ARCHITECTURE, 16(3), 17–36. https://doi.org/10.5505/itujfa.2019.46547


The gentrification process has been examined by sociologists, urban planners, geographers and many other professionals since the 1970s. However, despite a great deal of research into the concept, process, and other dimensions of gentrification, there are few studies which consider the importance of the perspective and experiences of residents and users. This paper focuses on the gentrification process and its impact on the nongentrifier residents of the Akaretler neighborhood of Beşiktaş, an area which was transformed following a major restoration project 10 years ago. In-depth interviews were conducted with long-term residents and business owners to investigate how they evaluate the changes in their neighborhood as well as the positive and negative impacts of gentrification on their lives. According to the findings, while the majority of respondents acknowledged the physical success of the restoration project, some of them also pointed out the negative economic, social, and cultural outcomes it has raised over the past 10 years. The outstanding negative issues are social integration difficulties, the lack of affordable properties, changes to property functions, and cultural contrast.