- Istanbul's historical Haydarpaşa Train Station will remain as a train station and go into service as the first station of Turkey's under-construction fast train network, according to plans approved by the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality.
The municipality has unanimously voted to revise its controversial 2013 plan that had foreseen a renovation of the historical station as a hotel.
The 2013 plan authorized the construction of new commercial buildings and hotels in the area where the 108-year-old station is located, as well as in the nearby Kadıköy Square and its surroundings.
However, the Istanbul Municipality recently decided to return the 2013 plan to the planning bureau, upon a proposal of the municipal committee on public works and reconstruction.
According to the new plan, Haydarpaşa will serve as the first station on the fast train network and its historical identity will be preserved.
In addition, additional green areas open for public use will surround the building and a museum of Turkish State Railways (TCDD) and railway history will be opened.
In its suggestion, the committee also said all registered artifacts and trees around the station must be preserved, while the Transport Ministry should conduct a revised plan for the areas needed for the TCDD museum.
Municipal council members Esin Hacıalioğlu and Hüseyin Sağ, both from the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), had submitted the new proposal and thanked the other members of the council and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) group for supporting the plans.
In the previous plan, the area inside and outside the station would have been opened to the construction of office buildings, restaurants, cafes, tourism facilities and housing projects.