chapter  3
20 Pages

Challenging the Neoliberal Urban Regime: Regeneration and Resistance in Baüıbüyük and Tarlabaüı

WithÖzlem Ünsal, Tuna Kuyucu

In March 2008, about 1,000 people from Baüıbüyük, a gecekondu1 neighbourhood in the Maltepe district, protested outside the municipality against the ‘transformation project’ in their neighbourhood. It was the first time that this politically conservative population participated in such a public demonstration.2 A group of residents carried signs that read ‘Our neighbourhood is our pride’, and ‘Baüıbüyük will be a grave for the TOKú (Toplu Konut údaresi)’.3 Later on, the spokesperson of the Istanbul Neighbourhood Associations Platform,4 delivered a press statement, criticizing the transformation projects because ‘their real aim is displacing poor working classes from their neighbourhoods that they formed with so much sweat and labour, and market their living areas to the rich’. When he finished his speech, the angry crowd surged towards the local AKP (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi, Justice Development Party) building, shouting ‘Baüıbüyük belongs to us and it always will’.