Curative Parasite

 Given the current situation in Fener (Istanbul) with its complex social network, the historical timber building stock and the strong opposition of the inhabitants to the upcoming gentrification plans, we propose an alternative of how the city can sustain itself through a progression of events and processing activities.

We experiment with the reuse of left-over space and material through the setting up of an enabling infrastructure that is slowly taken over by local inhabitants and turned into self-managed spaces; those spaces will gradually become productive, following a participative process with minimum cost. Elements that are considered as trash or debris can make up the raw material for the inhabitants to reconstruct their own

identical space. Adopting a DIY attitude, curating the built environment and involving the people, will gradually result in adding a new layer of interventions to the area in the form of a temporal parasitic condition, which will find its own way to evolve through time.

This project is about decisions and empowerment. It is an attempt to explore alternative ways of handling urban design by redefining the role of the designer and making him a tool to prepare the ground for a grassroots revival of a neighborhood that is currently at the edge of gentrification.

A research report (“Shout. Propose. Construct”) was also conducted regarding anti-gentrification strategies, community engagement and detailed descriptions of the background of the local people in Fener. The specific urban strategies and related actions are also analyzed and explained thoroughly. The report is available online here.

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