Morphological analysis of the formation and consolidation of the main street: The case of Kurtuluş Street, Antakya

Tiryaki, İrem Duygu
Süreli Yayın başlığı
Süreli Yayın ISSN
Cilt Başlığı
Graduate School
Moving in a linear space to go from one place to another is an instinctive characteristic of humans. In this context, the street that emerges as a linear space enabling movement and serves as a fundamental response to humans' innate needs is a significant element of the city formed by a combination of various parameters. These parameters affect the street's evolution by being influenced by the changing and transforming process of the city. In its evolutionary change, the street becomes essential to the city's internal integrity by initially incorporating social and economic dimensions into its physicality. In this part and whole relationship, the continuation of the process depends on responding to the needs of the period. The street that meets the local needs of the space undergoes various physical changes while continuing its existence. Therefore, it began to assume different roles involving multiple actors and responsibilities emerging from this changing process. As a result of these roles, the streets are primarily divided into main streets and local streets, with the main street representing a space that stands out from the rest of the street network. Thus, the main street, a linear public space where society spends the most time, the commercial axis that forms an economic centre, the primary carrier of pedestrian and vehicle transportation and the city's backbone is an essential element of the city. The physical integration of the street and its consolidation within the texture of the city is one of the most critical stages in transforming the street into a main street. Therefore, it is necessary to define the permanence of the main street in the urban texture and determine the parameters during the transformation process. This study aims to analyse the parameters of the formation of the main street based on the concept of consolidation. In this context, the research examines significant developments in the formation of the main street from the past to the present and how these steps were realised within an existing urban fabric. Furthermore, the study investigates the physical characteristics that led to the integration and consolidation of the main street with the urban fabric, allowing it to survive throughout history up to the present. Kurtuluş Street, Antakya, is selected as a research area that preserves its main street identity through its rich historical background. The study focuses on analysing the historical past that demonstrates the consolidation of the street and the parameters that make up this consolidation and integration. Accordingly, the study includes five main stages The first stage of this study examines the historical development of the street, starting from ancient settlements where the street is not visible and continuing throughout history. Starting from Çatalhöyük, considered one of the first settlement areas where the street did not exist, the street found its place spatially in the subsequent settlements. Then, it differentiated itself into primary and secondary roles by gaining different functions. As its importance grew, the need for different categories and subcategories in classification arose to increase its ability to respond to transportation needs. As a result of these needs, the street classification system reached its current form. While projects to reduce the impact of the street emerged in the early 19th century as its importance increased, counter-arguments revealed that the street continues to exist as one of the most crucial components of the city today and has solidified its role within the city. At this point, the diversity of functions that emphasise the importance of the street and the physical characteristics that consolidate it within the urban fabric are prominent topics worth analysing. The second stage covers the concept of the main street, including a section that explains the different roles and functions the street serves. The street acquires several names due to its responsibility to provide solutions to multiple variables, including its location and the user group it serves. Thus, the main street, which stands out from the street network, is most commonly defined as the most frequently used street, but its definition varies due to many reasons, such as the urban form and cultural structure of societies. The multiple meanings of the main street create confusion during the management and design phases, making it necessary to redefine it. Therefore, the main street is defined as an urban backbone, a linear space that has a historical past within traditional cities, is accustomed to people's use, meets various urban functions for daily and administrative needs, provides opportunities for vehicular and especially pedestrian transportation, and is designed according to human scale for creating a robust spatial perception in the third dimension. The third stage involves examining the parameters of consolidation within the urban fabric of the main street, with Kurtuluş Street, Antakya, selected as the pilot region. The historical plans and maps of Kurtuluş Street were examined during this phase, dating back to the Hellenistic period. Despite the destructive events that the city has undergone, such as fires, earthquakes, and invasions, it has been observed that Kurtuluş Street has maintained its status as the city's main street throughout history and has survived until the present day. Analysis of historical maps and plans reveals that, despite changes in the city's fabric, the street has remained integrated into the urban fabric and has mostly remained unchanged, consolidating within the urban core over time. The fourth stage investigated the physical parameters underlying the street's continuous importance during history. Based on the literature review, worldwide examples examined, and historical changes in the pilot region analysed, it was found that the degree of integration of the street within the urban fabric, the diversity of land use, and the density and continuity of buildings along the street are the parameters that affect the process of consolidation of the main street within the urban texture. Different examination methods were used for each parameter. The spatial arrangement method was used to investigate the integration of the avenue within the urban fabric, examining both global and local integration values. As a result, it was observed that the axes with the most integration with the fabric at both global and local scales are parts of the street. This observation explains why the street is the most frequently used street in the city centre and fulfils the role of the city's most commonly used artery. For land use analysis, the land use functions of the city's historical core in 1925 and 2022 were compared and evaluated, showing that the roles of the street have diversified and increased over the past century. Thereupon, it satisfies the need for the street to offer a variety of functions to the community and provide access to different social opportunities. The building continuity and density parameter was analysed by examining how buildings are positioned on the street to study building continuity and by analysing the number of doors, windows, and showcase to check building density. As a result, it was observed that buildings are mostly located in line with the street, creating an uninterrupted perspective on the street, thus strengthening the sense of space. Regarding building density, the high number of doors, windows, and showcases in buildings indicates the level of building density and permeability on the street, which increases the frequency of street use and thus consolidates the street within the urban fabric. The building continuity and density on Kurtuluş Street support the street's strong perception of space, which is essential for the main street. The fifth stage of the study is evaluating the analysis data resulting from all stages. As a result, it has been observed that various parameters are effective in the analysis conducted towards the permanence of the main street within the urban fabric. In this context, it has been determined that Kurtuluş Street, with the highest integration rate within the street network, providing various functions primarily as a commercial route, and increasing spatial perception with building density and continuity, is a permeable and used route. These features that Kurtuluş Street possesses as a main street have enabled it to reach the present day as the most frequently used and integrated artery within the city. The parameters examined in the study and the pilot area are thought to contribute to proving the importance of the main street and making interventions for Kurtuluş Street. As a result of the analyses presented by this study, it is believed that examining the formation and consolidation process and parameters of the main street will allow for a different approach to the location and function of the main street in future urban planning and urban design studies. Additionally, after the significant destruction caused by the earthquakes on February 6, 2023, preserving the city's values and reviving Kurtuluş Street as the host to the community's cultural existence has become even more critical to maintain Antakya in the future. In this context, the thesis emphasises the necessity of evaluating Kurtuluş Street as a living space and examining it through this context.
Thesis (M.Sc.) -- İstanbul Technical University, Graduate School, 2023
Anahtar kelimeler
urban morphology, kent morfolojisi, space syntax analysis method, mekan dizimi analiz yöntemi