A Study on the Contributions of the Modernization Process in Kayseri: The Kayseri Train Station and its Environment


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SÖNMEZ F., ARSLAN SELÇUK S.

MEGARON, vol.13, no.1, pp.85-101, 2018 (Journal Indexed in ESCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 13 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.5505/megaron.2017.09825
  • Title of Journal : MEGARON
  • Page Numbers: pp.85-101

Abstract

One of the most important investments that the Republic of Turkey inherited from the Ottoman Empire was its network of railways and stations. It is well known that the modernization/development policy of the early Republican period of Turkey was built on the expansion of the railway network across the country. In this context, train stations and the railway environment, as well as the socio-cultural make-up of the city and its citizens, can be seen as part of the national and local modernization project. This study examines the Kayseri Train Station and Istasyon Caddesi (Station Street) and their contributions to the transformation of the city within the context of the modernization project. The impact on the city's physical environment included new roads, residential areas, public spaces, modern landscaping, and new sub-centers in the north of the city. A wide variety of socio-cultural activities have taken place there, ranging from the addition of educational facilities to official celebrations of national holidays, and the area reflects the visibility and power of the nation-state. It is possible to argue that, along with the modern housing facilities located nearby, these structures can be seen as the groundwork in connecting the people of Kayseri with "modern life." Therefore, their role in the physical and socio-cultural transformation of the city was examined not only in terms of structure and scale with regard to urban space, but specifically in terms of Kayseri's own local parameters. While all Anatolian cities may have experienced similar transformations, upon close examination, distinct differences can be observed.