Chamber of Architects: History and original texture are being destroyed in Suriçi

The Amed Branch of the Chamber of Architects, denounced a terrible effect on the historical and original texture in the Suriçi Urban Protected Area.

The Amed (Diyarbakır) Branch of the Chamber of Architects issued a press release in front of Keçi Burcu to notify the public about the widespread dissatisfaction with the repair and rebuilding work at the Suriçi Urban Site. Members of the chapter took part in the action, which featured the unveiling of the banner "This city is not unclaimed."

Ferit Kahraman, Co-chairman of the Chamber of Architects Branch, recalled the "curfews" declared in 6 neighbourhoods of the Amed Suriçi region on December 2, 2015 and stated that the destruction of cultural heritage and civil architectural structures, grievances experienced by the people, uncertainties in the area, and property problems had continued for the past 5 years.


Noting that the destruction continues, Kahraman said: “The government and its officials, trustees, administrators, and decision-makers, who brought an army of the press and media with them for every nail they hammered, should be called into question regarding on which street and in front of which building they boasted that those structures were their labour.

In order to mask the unlawful interventions, destructions, and irregularities in the constructions in the urban site, they made revisions to the Conservation Development Plan in 2016, 2017, and 2018, and as a result, they erected these enormous structures within which they were finally trapped. They must have realized they had made a mistake after these results, which are far from the civil architecture precedents and have little to do with the original street texture.”


Pointing out that the reconstructions were started through the tender processes managed from Ankara, Kahraman said, “During this process, we made decisions and evaluations based on the information and photos conveyed to us by experts in the field, the impressions we have gained from the works, the complaints and witness accounts conveyed by citizens; there has been some contradictory opinion that the works are far from the conservation culture, the materials used do not fit the authentic texture which is thus deprived of the traces reflecting its nature.”

According to Kahraman, they first "requested permission" from the Provincial Directorate of Environment and Urbanization on 14 July, but did not receive a written response despite their written requests, and the Ministry of Environment and Urbanization Mass Housing Administration was identified as the authorized institution on 30 July. He stated that the city and the architectural community are concerned about the uncertainty and objections about the repair work being done in the neighborhoods. According to Kahraman, technical inspection permission was obtained to assess the restoration operations on-site in order to alleviate these worries and doubts and properly inform the public.

Kahraman said they had received a negative response stating that “It would not be appropriate to examine the restoration works on-site by third parties.” He continued, We would like to emphasize here that no one who acts with the awareness of protecting the cultural heritage, especially citizens who have property rights to the buildings, but whose works are carried out without permission, is a third party. We are all first-degree co-owners of this legacy, and we have the right to demand transparency in the work done in the field of heritage.”

"We encourage the Reactive Monitoring Committee to visit the field," Kahraman added, expressing a desire for the procedures to be open and inclusive.