Erasing the history

Is it just the beginning, is it gonna get worse? The law is clear as crystal, it was put into action on July 2014, giving the power to landlords to evacuate their tenants after 10 years of residence without any negotiation, erasing the history. A cutthroat law paving the way to evacuation of many many small business, esnaf, small tradesmen…! Those businesses are part of the the history, the culture, the soul of the city, they are what makes Istanbul, what makes Turkey unique. Why are we erasing our history?

You may be surprised why they did not own their businesses in these long years, couple of reasons; a gentleman’s agreement, a handshake and a verbal promise was one of them. This verbal agreement was enough for the grandfathers of both sides, but years passed and the pact is broken when the grandfathers passed away and the new generation was after more profits, more money and all the promises are lost forever. Besides money, most of the new generation does not respect the cultural heritage, nor they care what the establishment is standing for, how many years has it been in service or their bond with the family, total numbness…

The other reason is, as you can imagine, to own a shop on a main district, in Istanbul,on a shopping avenue is almost impossible for small establishments.

New places that does not have any soul. all the same products, same brands, killing all the customs that have been in our society for years. But the thing is that they do not respect what we see, what Turkey is made of, they only want more money, more profit and to protect of their own. Retrogression is what we are facing. 

We, do not need more hotels.

We, do not need chain stores in every corner of town.

We do not need more cafes, brasseries with the same menu all around the city, country.

We need to reclaim our authenticity, our history, our culture, our old establishments, our people, their histories, our own city. The moral values hold a higher ground than any material

Pando, established 1895, evicted 2014, the place is abandoned right now.

Tarihi Filibe Köftecisi, established 1893, trial is going on, landlord wants to evict them asap, what will they do with the place, unknown.

Lebon Pastanesi, established 1886, trial is going on, the trust wants them out so they could hire it to a hotel.

One of my favorite shops at Kadıköy (they did not want to mention the name) having the same issues with the landlord. 4 other shops at Kadıköy was evicted, after the high rise demand for rents. Kadıköy, is turning into big restaurant district with no soul.

Creating petitions on change.org does not help, and it is so disappointing to see that most of he people are not interested, they are just after the perfect shot for their instagram account. So what if that small meatball place is closed, they will go to another one and totally forget that place ever existed.

And I am devastated by these shameful evictions and afraid to hear more bad news every day…

Pando Amca...

Pando Amca…