Bağcılar is a unique district with its demographic structure, atmosphere plus social and cultural life. If you look carefully, you will see that Bağcılar presents the mosaic structure of Turkey. People from various backgrounds meets in a suburb, in the middle of Istanbul, revealing one of the most crowded district of Istanbul with the population of 750,000 people.
Bağcılar was a small village before 1980s. After its original residents had left, housing in Bağcılar was out of control due to huge migration wave from different parts of Anatolia. Too many buildings, mostly illegal due to application of minimal regulations, appeared in a very short time. Consequently, Bağcılar broadened in an unplanned way which can be given as a good example for the failure of urban planning.
This district had been discarded for a long time. Only investment came from greedy textile bosses who are looking for cheap labour. Numerous small outfit factories opened and residents worked for a little amount of money. Eventually, this brutal business didn’t work well as it couldn’t compete with Merter where the professional and corporate textile centre of Istanbul had already been developed.
After a long time, Bağcılar started to get investment and local council started to work harder. Today, the district is hosting a very large second-hand car market, trucking companies, textile factories and biggest newspaper and TV channels.
Bağcılar is very well connected with the city centre as couple of developed transportation lines including subway and tram are passing through this region. Travelling by means of buses and dolmush (dolmuş) buses are the other options if you plan to make your way down to Bağcılar.
Photo Credits: Bağcılar Municipality