Project Year: 2019
Project Team: Yilmaz Deger, Yonca Atam, Bicem Kaya
Assistants: Ozlem Delikanlı, Aylin Aya, Berk Ekmen
Location: Ankara, Turkey
Designing a public space; poetic emptiness for Ankara.
Labor, Peace, Democracy… The basic concepts of sustainable contemporary social life. Cities are the cradle of civilization and democracy and serve as spaces where free individuals can come together to enrich one another. The existence of such “space”, which are described as “squares” in the urban fabric, are also indicators of democracy. The functioning of democracy can create spaces for societies and individuals; and is measured by its ability to create space for freedom, differences, and actions. In the proposed project “Ankara Train Station Square”, which holds an important place in the city memory, has been redesigned as a ‘common ground’; a ‘space’ in the context of labor, peace, and democracy.
First of all, on an urban scale, the vehicle-oriented underground passage is removed as it creates a handicap for pedestrians in the context of accessibility and restricts the multipurpose usability of the area. It provides an environment for large meetings. Apart from emergency and service requirements, the vehicle entrance is removed and the square is reserved for pedestrians only. The entire square is designed as a hard ground that provides a “neutral space” that is completely flat, non-directing, an environment for a variety of uses with an intention to create a poetic, dramatic space effect. To increase the dramatic effect in the area, lighting elements are mainly provided through luminaires embedded in the ground. Seating elements are not stationary, instead, they are mobile units that users can arrange according to their preferences. A water feature on the same level is considered in two separate areas. Fountains embedded in the ground add visual richness to the area at specific times. The long and permeable, porous wall, which is called the ‘Democracy Wall’, is designed parallel to the Gar Building and Hippodrome / Talat Pasha Street and has historically emphasized the “entrance gate” feature of the city. With the existence of the Democracy Wall, the designed square has gained a more ‘defined’ space feature.