kagithane ofispark
Kağıthane Ofispark, 2007

Istanbul, Turkey

Kağıthane region is going to be the subject of one of the urban renovation strategies in Istanbul which are aimed to fulfill the accelerating necessity of business district for the European side of the city in recent years.

Watercourse and periphery of the Kağıthane had been used as countryside until 1900s afterwards it had consisted of small and medium scale industries. In the last decade Kağıthane has transformed to a typical low income neighborhood by the conveyance of the industry.

Although it was located next to the Büyükdere Avenue which is the most important business districts of Istanbul and has a direct connection to the highway, Kağıthane had remained as a slum for a long while. The main problematic of the project was how capitalist expectations and demands could face with the existing physical and social environment of Kağıthane.

The project was aimed not a generic office building which comes into existence by ignoring the location and considering the its relationship with existent social and physical structure as a “tabula rasa” but a building which gives importance to its land, considers the existent building stock as a kind of architectural reference and takes into consideration of the regional publicity while satisfying the capitalist expectations. In other words the project was aimed to be an appealing investment for the capital while it successes its architectural ideals.

While its mass dispersion, size and façade regulation give reference to its self-shaped urban pattern of existent periphery, the project arises above an 8x8m square grid of axes of the garage floor with different geometric sized of office blocks which have average 400m2 on their each floor. These blocks can be sold or rented as individual units or with the horizontal connector bridges of the different levels they can be planned as a single office complex.

It was aimed to gain the daylight to the office spaces homogeneously by voiding the interior volumes where the blocks come closer, in spite of that, in the façades, there had different strategies on different directions in order to maximize the natural light use.

For such a reason the storey height of the blocks was designed as high as possible by municipal regulations.On the ground floor, the space between office blocks which was supported with commercial functions, was considered as a public space for the all citizens of the region. The chimneys of the ruined nail factory, which can stand stable, was planned to use the elements of the mechanical system of the new complex.

We hope to see our project could be a reference for the accelerating growth in near future of Kağıthane by its position in the gray area between the capitalist economy’s expectations and Architects’ ideal world.