A large-scale urban renewal project in a vicious cycle of commons and anticommons: The Fikirtepe case (Istanbul, Turkey)

Türk Ş. Ş., Tarakci S., Gursoy N.

HABITAT INTERNATIONAL, vol.102, 2020 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 102
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.habitatint.2020.102209
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, International Bibliography of Social Sciences, Business Source Elite, Business Source Premier, CAB Abstracts, Environment Index, Geobase, PAIS International, Political Science Complete, Public Affairs Index, Social services abstracts, Sociological abstracts, Worldwide Political Science Abstracts
  • Keywords: Tragedy of the commons, Tragedy of the anticommons, Land assembly, Urban renewal, Fikirtepe, Istanbul (Turkey), EMINENT DOMAIN, PROPERTY, TRAGEDY, REDEVELOPMENT, CITY
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


In the cities of countries that have undergone rapid population growth and dynamic development, two phenomena attributable to market failure prevent sustainable urban renewal and reconfiguration. The tragedy of the commons and the tragedy of the anticommons. This article focuses on how the coexistence of commons and anticommons is designed on a specific example in a narrow perspective. In the selected sample area, the Fikirtepe Urban Renewal Project (Istanbul, Turkey), plan decisions (plan notes) that stimulate densification for land assembly were analyzed. This study aims to examine a large-scale and holistic urban renewal project that includes using plan notes to eliminate a co-existence of the commons and the anticommons. Semi-structured interviews with were carried out with 17 people who represent different key actors in the Fikirtepe Urban Renewal Project. The findings demonstrate that there are some conditions to implement this method for a holistic urban renewal project. The first is that the state (central or local governments) needs to be initially involved in this form of urban renewal project. Second, it is needed to defined the organizational structure and roles at the beginning. Third, increase of the legal power of the plan notes is needed. Fourth, ensuring legal certainty for all sides is needed in the land assembly stage.