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Cultural heritage and one of the UNESCO world heritage list, Cumalikizik

Author: 
Meryem Alagöz and Aysu Özdoğan
Subject Area: 
Social Sciences and Humanities
Abstract: 

Due to the fact that we are located in a historical geoghrapy, there has always been debate as to which criteria are needed for planning without disrupting the cultural texture. In order to provide those who live in a historical environment with the opportunities of contemporary life and to adapt the buildings and places into today’s needs and contemporary lifestyle, an interdisciplinary study is required. Today, unplanned urbanization and excessive increase in the heights of buildings with the recent development zoning rights have negatively affected historical buildings and even made them impossible to be perceived. Due to being surrounded by extremely high constructions, the effects of historical spaces on the silhouette have considerably decreased. Likewise, density has been causing pressure on the extension of narrow streets in historical settlements. Not to mention the fact that visual integrity and harmony of historical environment has been fading away since the undesired technological elements got involved. Cumalıkızık Village, however, has been added to UNESCO World Heritage List by the year 2014. Established in Bursa in the context of waqf (public endowment) by Ottoman Empire founder Osman Gazi, Cumalıkızık is one of other seven villages that are located between the foots of Uludağ Mountain and valleys. The villages were named after ‘’kızık’’, which represents one of the clans of Oghuz Turks. Besides having a strong cultural heritage and involving many natural beauties, Cumalıkızık is one of the most significant examples of Ottoman rural civil architecture. It still preserves its presence by carrying the past towards the future with its historical mosques and hamams, plane trees, organic street texture and characteristic houses. Made of rubble stone, wood and adobe, Cumalıkızık Houses are triplex buildings which involve iron-made doorknockers and handles on the street doors. The houses have different colours ranging from white, yellow, red to purple. There are narrow, stony streets with no pavements where corner walls of the streets are beveled suitably for organic settlement. So far these asymmetric walls have changed depending on the stylistic features of different periods. The most prominent architectural style of Turkish Houses, “Exhedras”, which were used as living room and had a great importance on Turkish life, also reflect the characteristic features of these traditional houses. In accordance with these criteria, traditionality must be protected in the architectural designs that will be made in Cumalıkızık in the future. Additionally, these designs should preserve the building culture and physical texture of the area while responding against changing demands and functions of different periods. This study analyzes recently constructed sample buildings in terms of their accordance with cultural texture, by using scanning and evaluation methods.

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