The Cause of Chaos in Istanbul Traffic

The cause of chaos in Istanbul traffic
The cause of chaos in Istanbul traffic

Professor Dr. We talked with Haluk Gerçek about the transportation problem of Istanbul, the source of this problem and how to solve it.

UniversalAccording to Meltem Akyol's service; “I think the first traffic comes to mind when I say Istanbul. Never moving traffic, metrobus does not come empty, which means that what is empty here, users will understand, the bus does not arrive at the clock, trapped tram… Examples too… Already returning to Istanbul in the last weeks of transport problems has become thoroughly inextricable. And when Istanbul is vacant every summer ınca I suppose “Istanbul is over,” the most commonly said in these days… So what is the reason for the malfunctions in Istanbul, and what is happening in Istanbul? Starting from this question, our questions in mind, Istanbul Technical University, Faculty of Construction Retired Professor. Dr. We asked Haluk Gerçek. According to Gerçek, there is a lot of reasons for the rat race, but the most important reason is the wrong urbanization and transportation policies.

COMPLETED PROJECTS MAIN WHY

Let's start with the current debate on the failures, if you wish, what is the conspiracy in Istanbul, the new administration is being established?

The problems you mentioned were not only after the change of the municipal administration, but also before. Maybe it did, but it wouldn't be right to link them to a conspiracy theory. Such problems may arise from time to time in terms of technique and operation in the transportation system. But there are some reasons why we have too much. First of all, these projects are put into operation before all the necessary technical equipment is completed. In other words, a project that has not yet been completed by election or any other reason is being opened, despite all warnings of the persons and institutions concerned. You know the train accident in Ankara, Minister of Transport and Infrastructure, 'There is no need for signaling the high-speed train line here'. This is one of the most wrong things a transport minister can say. There are lots of examples like this. It is inevitable to face such problems when these projects are put into operation before the technical requirements of the system are completed or maintenance and controls are not performed. The problem with Metrobus is that this system works by pushing the capacity limits. In the event of a minor breakdown or accident, the entire system is paralyzed.

NO CURRENT TRANSPORT POLICY

What is the main problem of Istanbul transportation, traffic, unplanned, transportation policy?
The result is a result of a multi-layered structure. Transportation is ultimately part of the urban plan and urban organism. When descending to the sources of urban transportation and traffic problems, it is necessary to first look at how the city is planned and developed. Especially after years of '80'li Istanbul has grown as much as possible. Population increased, the number of motor vehicles increased rapidly, built areas increased; continues to increase. The numerical data are really scary. Istanbul has become a olmayan city without a tip ”. While the city has grown beyond its natural and ecological boundaries, the number of vehicles has increased and many transportation investments have been made. However, it is not possible to say that the administrations have a consistent urbanization and transportation policies. Investments made by road which provoked car traffic should not be made in Istanbul. Among these investments are the North Marmara motorway, urban road tunnels, large intersections and parking lots. Automobile traffic provocative road traffic with the city traffic has become even more inextricable. Due to the lack of public transport, people continue to drive.

ISTANBUL TRAFFIC IS THE FIRST RANK OF CLOCKED CITIES

But most proud of subjects in Turkey roads, bridges ...
Between the years 2002-2013, the number of motor vehicles in Istanbul increased by 105 per cent and total road area by 182 per cent. As far as roads, bridges, tunnels, intersections were made, Istanbul still ranks among the most congested cities in the world according to international traffic congestion indices. This means that the problem of transportation and traffic is not solved by making roads, bridges, tunnels, intersections. Local and central authorities think that they will solve the transportation and traffic problems of the city by increasing the road capacity. However, temporary comfort at the beginning is lost in a short time due to the “provoked” traffic. People are starting to drive more. In the medium term, the roads are built around them and after a while new roads are blocked again by creating their own traffic. This vicious circle has been going on for years. As a result, making more roads does not reduce traffic congestion, but rather increases it. As Glen Heimstra of the United States said, genişlet Extending roads to solve traffic congestion is like an obese person loosening his belt to treat himself. Bir It's a beautiful analogy, and it's exactly what it is. We have seen the most typical examples of this in Istanbul. First we saw the bridge and the ring road, then the FSM Bridge and TEM TEM These investments accelerated the development of the city to the north and caused the destruction of Istanbul's natural areas, forests and water basins that must be protected. The latest examples are the Northern Marmara Motorway and Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge and 3. airport. Now the roads around them seem to be empty, since the construction around them has not yet been completed. But after the emergence of newly built areas, these roads will begin to be blocked.

CONSTRUCTION IS COMING TO THE SMARTS

While these debates are often made, there is also a criticism of 'unplanned', isn't there a transportation plan in Istanbul?

For the sustainable development of the city and transportation, right plans must be made and implemented. Unfortunately, although we have made many main plans in recent years, most of the investments are contrary to these plans. For example, during the time of Kadir Topbaş, the 1 / 100.000 Scale Environmental Plan, which was described as the 'constitution of the city', was prepared. But what 3 is in the background. There were bridges and the Northern Marmara Motorway, nor the Eurasian Tunnel. 3. the airport was envisaged in Silivri. Since 1995, there have also been several transport master plans. In summary, plans are made but not implemented. Because he doesn't believe in politics. Plans are made because it is a legal obligation. On the other hand, decisions about the city and transportation are made in an unplanned and rent-oriented way entirely according to the personal preferences of politicians. This leads to a chaotic situation.

I think the transportation projects are a bit choice-oriented de
President Tayyip Erdoğan showed the ribbon sections at the opening of some parts of the Istanbul-Izmir Highway to those attending the Izmir rally before the local elections. Transport investments are politicians' favorite. You open, you cut the ribbon; We've made so many roads, tunnels, bridges that we've made. Politicians all over the world think investment-oriented, construction-oriented, and when it comes to solving transportation, construction comes to mind first.

One of the most important problems of Istanbul is the management of transportation var There are many different, segmented institutions and organizations related to transportation. At the Istanbul Urban Transportation Symposium held in 2002, it was revealed that 17 was responsible for the transportation of Istanbul. Many competent institutions such as Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure, Ministry of Environment and Urbanization, General Directorate of Security and IMM are involved in the transportation of Istanbul. Sometimes you see that even the two units of the same municipality are unaware of each other. They need to be eliminated and the management and decision-making process should be democratized and rationalized.

GOOD TECHNICAL EXPERTS DO NOT ENOUGH, PUBLIC PARTICIPATION MUST BE PROVIDED

Recent appointments in IMM have been discussed, names known to the public, experts in their fields, but is this the only problem with technical expertise or lack of planning? Is public participation negligible?

Of course, it is very important to appoint managers with merit, knowledge and experience to the relevant units. However, solutions related to the city and transportation are developed, plans, projects are carried out by asking people who live in the city and will be affected by these plans, projects, taking their opinions and suggestions, a participatory, democratic common mind process needs to be followed. The best examples in the world have always emerged in this way. In environments representing the city, such as neighborhood councils, city councils and non-governmental organizations, these should be discussed and the most appropriate solutions identified. As a result, all these plans and projects are made to improve people's quality of life. But so far, although there have been some positive, well-intentioned efforts, it has always been the opposite. Here 'Get this is good for you' as a result of the understanding of what Taksim Square has become. Taksim has been turned into a concrete square in front of everyone, a really pathetic situation. Moreover, Taksim is not the only example. Eminönü, ceased to be a square, became a motorway junction.

CUSTOMIZATION: SERVICE DROP, PRICES INCREASED

There is also the privatization side of transportation and the main reasons for privatization policies, what has led to the deepening of the transportation crisis?

I think that public transport should not be privatized. Because, first of all, transportation is a public right, an urban right for everyone living in the city, ie the elderly, children, people without automobiles, low income groups and all disadvantaged groups. For everyone to have easy and cheap access to public transport, public transport should be seen as a social service and should not be operated for profit. The private sector wants to make a profit due to its structure. In addition, the contracts with the private sector for the operation of public transport systems are very weak, the necessary controls and sanctions on them are almost nonexistent. For example, before the election, IDO canceled some lines on the grounds that there were not enough passengers, and even some lines would not be operated on election day. It is impossible to accept such a thing. But, especially after the years of '80', the private sector entered the public transport business with liberal policies followed around the world. There are private public buses, minibuses and IDO in Istanbul. The process of privatization of TCDD was initiated, ports were privatized, and so on. But public transport needs to be supported by the state in order for people to travel in a cheap and quality way. We hear very often, they say, 'The public is hurting', but we see that public transport is subsidized because public transport is not for profit. In Vienna, for example, the 700 million subsidy is provided annually to the public transport system. Since 2013, Viennaans have been able to travel an unlimited number of 1 euros per day.

HOW TO SOLVE THE TRANSPORTATION PROBLEM OF ISTANBUL?

What should be done first-hand, what do you think?

First of all, a change of understanding is needed. In other words, politics needs to change the way it looks at transportation and the city. It is necessary to plan the city in order to create a human-oriented and livable city, to take such decisions and to implement these decisions with the support of the public. Mr. İmamoğlu explained that the budget of the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality is very problematic, ie the debt is very high. Therefore, the investments that have been started or decided to be made must be re-evaluated and their requirements and priorities must be determined correctly.

* With the investments made in recent years, the share of the rail system in public transportation has increased to 25 percent. This is a very good development. Metro projects should continue in a planned and prioritized manner.
The previous administration planned a total 140 kilometer road tunnel to Istanbul. In my opinion, the new administration should stop road tunnel projects, except for the works that are largely completed or that need to be done in terms of building security.

* Sea transportation is a great opportunity for Istanbul. But the share of maritime transport in public transport is now 3. It is possible to increase this rate. It is necessary to facilitate access to maritime transport by opening new berths and lines and integrating the sea with other forms of public transport.

* One of the biggest deficiencies is non-motorized transportation, ie pedestrian and bicycle transportation. 45 is used as a pedestrian, but it is not possible to say that Istanbul is a walkable city. Likewise, there is no network of bicycle paths to be used for transportation, except for coastal and sports routes. Pedestrianization projects, bicycle path projects should be given priority.

* Mayor candidates who announced transportation projects prior to local elections unfortunately did not include automobile restrictive projects in their proposals. Even the social democratic mayors promised to increase their parking capacity before the election. This is very wrong. Because if you park especially in the central areas of the city, you encourage people to come by car. Politics, car manufacturers and users do not want to scare. However, one of the most important keys to success in urban transport is: Investments are not enough to improve the public transport system, pedestrian and bicycle transportation. In addition to this, it is absolutely necessary to implement automobile restrictive policies (such as pricing car access to urban centers, pedestrianization, reducing parking spaces and calming traffic, etc.).

* When budgetary problems are taken into consideration, priority should be given to urban projects and improvements at local scale, which have low-cost but positive effects, rather than mega projects. In this context, pedestrianization, bicycle path and parking restriction projects that will calm traffic and reduce the use of cars in the city center areas can be considered. In order to get the support of the people while doing this, it is necessary to determine the most appropriate solutions by discussing the environments representing the city such as neighborhood councils, city councils and non-governmental organizations.

Of course, perhaps the most important thing is to make public transport cheaper, more comfortable and more punctual…

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