Towards Sustainable Architecture: The Transformation of the Built Environment in Istanbul, Turkey

Mutdogan S., Wong T.



Towards the end of the twentieth century, new consumerist lifestyles coupled with technological innovations and rising environmental consciousness have changed the concept in environmental and building designs. Conscientious developers and city governments see green building and environmental designs as a useful approach to counter the adverse effects of global warming, fossil energy consumption and nature destruction that have threatened ecological and human health. Today, sustainable architecture and green design have become an important agenda of the built environment. The aim of this study is to examine the efforts made towards constructing sustainable office buildings in Istanbul, Turkey. In Istanbul, due to its unique location and historical background, innovative, modern and sustainable buildings have been built in its newly developed central city area, such as Buyukdere Avenue. Using a chosen set of green building rating systems as criteria, assessment was focused on site-environment, energy-water, materials-resources and indoor environmental quality: High-rise office buildings selected for this survey were Metrocity Office Building, I bank Headquarters and the Akbank Tower along Buyukdere Avenue. Results showed that standards achieved were low but they were symbolic of a self-initiated will in line with the international agenda towards urban ecological conservation.