Ümraniye is very large working class district on Asian side of the city. It was a rudimentary district short time ago. Recently, there has been a great deal of change all around the district. With the projects such as building complex, large shopping malls, entertainment centres and environmental urbanization , Ümraniye is fastest growing district in Istanbul.
Ümraniye began as a small village and population was not more than 1000. Due to migration to cities from rural areas of Anatolia, its population grew same like all the other areas in Istanbul. Consequently, it lost its green nature and numerous illegal houses built quickly without caring any of urbanization. Black Sea contractors built wherever was empty. In conclusion, aspect of Ümraniye is not really different than far Anatolian city.
In the last decades, Ümraniye has built a lively shopping and business district. First Carrefour opened following centre of district modernized and shopping stores started to open along the street. Due to fast modernization, Ümraniye has got attraction of investors. Now, big companies and large shopping malls such as Ikea, Siemens, Bayer, Bosch, Buyaka AVM, and Meydan AVM are located in Ümraniye district.
Although Ümraniye is keep going modernization, district still looking for its identity which means when you’re in Ümraniye you see skyscrapers meanwhile the things which you can see in suburbs. Common criticism is oppositeness between aspect of district and its social character. Many Istanbulers think that residents of Ümraniye are still rural, conservative and illiterate and they are not suitable for Istanbul city. Consequently, governor of district is accused of spending money for aspect of the district instead of providing educational opportunity.
Traffic jam is another killing problem of the district. Definitely, it’s the worst in Istanbul. Location ally, Ümraniye is close to both two bridges on Bosporus so it is crossover for drivers. There’s no rail system and driving style of minibus and bus drivers makes matters worse. It’s so normal to see a minibus driver get off his transport for fighting and numerous cars waiting his fight ends. Consequently, the way between Üsküdar-Ümraniye may take more than half an hour although it takes only 5 minutes if you drive in midnight.
Photo Credits: Ümraniye Municipality