A Brief History of Modern Istanbul

Over by the Bosphorous, tides of change have ushered in a new chapter of history, a new style of architecture, and a new identity of the great metropolis of Istanbul. Taksim Square is the most recent wave of fighting for the character of Istanbul — you might remember the protests in defense of parks, trees, and urban design last year — but one of the most influential changes to the urban fabric last century was the mid-century boom of gedekondu. The informal housing (literally “overnight housing”) has redefined the boundaries, demographics, and movements of the seaside city, which Doug Saunders explores in his chapter on Istanbul. Below is a brief history of modern-day Istanbul in less than seven minutes, explaining the role of the gedekondu and what Istanbul is like today.

The video was found on Reclaim Istanbul, a great site with in depth coverage of what’s happening in the big city.

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