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Thursday, June 30, 2022

President Erdoğan unveils ‘social service city’ in Istanbul 

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Dubbed one-of-a-kind, “a social service city,” which will bring together people in need of a shelter, is being built in Istanbul. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan attended a foundation-laying ceremony for a massive complex on the European side of the city on Friday. “The city” in question is the work of the Ministry of Family and Social Services and will bear the name of Darülaceze, a historic nursing home tracing its roots to the Ottoman Empire. Along with the residents of Darülaceze, the complex will serve orphaned children living in care homes in 23 blocks and with a capacity of more than 1,000 beds. Sprawling across an area of some 150,000 square meters, it will be in the format of a small town, complete with a town square with a traditional coffeehouse, restaurants and a mosque, as well as a church and synagogue. The city is located near Istanbul Airport and will bear the traces of Turkey’s ambitious plans to promote “horizontal architecture,” that is, buildings with fewer floors. Along with living spaces and other facilities, the complex will host an arts and sports center and an additional five blocks with 174 beds for possible future accommodation needs. A rehabilitation center and a social center will offer the residents both socialization and vocational learning courses. For the children, playgrounds will be built. Residents will be provided one, two, three or four-person rooms, along with common spaces like kitchens, fitness centers and a spa. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said at the ceremony that the project fits with the “purpose and history” of Darülaceze, paying tribute to Sultan Abdülhamid II, the Ottoman monarch “who gifted this institution to the nation so people without any company will have some.” He said they inherited this legacy of “embracing needy people regardless of their faith, gender, age or race.”

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