100th Ataturk Culture Park (Turkey)

This is an unusual park in the city of Gaziantep in the southeast of Turkey. The city houses 1,5 million inhabitants and is situated on a plain not far from the Syrian border. It has a long history, sometimes considered one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world.  There are traces of settlements as far back as the 4th millennium BC. In the midst of the city – and in fact in the park – stands a castle and a citadel as they were restored in the 6th century.

The park runs right through the city, a stretch of 15 km. It is made up of 18 different parks. A new one is now under construction plus several smaller additions. The parks make up a green necklace running on both sides along the stream Alleben. In total it makes up 4.3 square km and thus is on the average 300 m wide. This means it is lined by and cut through by traffic in many places. In 1989 two young architects proposed a design to form a whole of the many parks along the stream. It now provides the citizens with sports fields, tennis courts, amphitheater, a botanical garden and much more – and, of course, a lot of restaurants. A large mosque is located in one of the parks.
It is an interesting concept to make use of existing green patches to create a large urban park.