President Bozdoğan: Don't Destroy Our City with a 2.7 Km Railway Project

High Standard Railway Project Evaluation by President Bozdoğan
High Standard Railway Project Evaluation by President Bozdoğan

Tarsus Mayor Dr. Haluk Bozdoğan spoke harshly at the meeting held on the Mersin-Adana-Gaziantep High Standard Railway Project. Mayor Bozdoğan said, “We do not want our city to be divided into two. Local governments that are integrated with the public who are stakeholders should be well listened to about the project. We are waiting for detailed explanations from the necessary places. '' he said.

Stakeholder Engagement and Informing Meeting in the ESIA Process of Mersin-Adana-Gaziantep-High Standard Railway Project carried out by the General Directorate of Infrastructure Investments, Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure was held in Tarsus Municipal Assembly Hall. Regarding the High Standard Railway project planned to be made at the meeting held, by Günal Özenenler, Environmental Engineer and Project Manager at the relevant Engineering and Consultancy Firm, and Gökçem Altıntaş, the authorized person from the Construction Investment Industry Incorporated; A presentation was made about the project introduction, the Mersin line, the project stakeholders, the construction and operation period, and the environmental and social impact assessments.

After the presentation, President Bozdoğan talked about the fact that the railway project's stakeholders, the local governments and the public, acted without taking their opinions, and despite all the efforts, the train line was not welcomed to pass underground, despite going to Ankara many times. President Bozdoğan, "What will happen to Tarsus? Will this city split in two? Tarsus is a city, half of which lives in the north, and the other half of which there are workplaces in the lower part. A survey study was carried out, and the public insisted on this seriously. Do not divide this city in two. We went to Ankara many times, told what we wanted, we said not to divide this city into two. What's the result? There are no results. Now we want the necessary explanations to be made from the necessary places. '' he said.


Stating that local governments and citizens should be listened to in the project, Tarsus Mayor Dr. Haluk Bozdoğan said, “This city has a culture and identity. This city has a serious memory. What is described as stakeholder here is the public and local government. We have been doing everything we can for this project for 2 years. Drilling work, drone shots, we have carried out all kinds of studies that you can think of. We held meetings with every interlocutor regarding the project and expressed their opinions. We wanted only one answer. Railway; Will it be a viaduct or a lower road? We do not get the required answer. In the 2.7 km railway project, the city will be divided into two. We want results. In this context, local governments and the public should be listened to. A project, a company comes, the story begins, then the story continues, but while the story continues, our people have a resistance and a problem. Do not forget that Tarsus is a city of 10 thousand years. And this city overthrew the Hittites, overthrew the Assyrians, overthrew the Ottomans, and overthrew the Anatolian Seljuk State. It is currently a city of our Republic of Turkey. Tarsus has always existed and will continue to exist. Do not destroy our city with this train project, that is 2.7 km. ''said.


Expressing that the lower road should be used in the railway project, Mayor Bozdoğan said, “Our city has such a life and people have such a bond with each other that we want you to see it. Tarsus is the capital of civilization, history and multiculturalism. We are looking at a project coming to the city, people have been sleeping with this project for years and wake up with this project. All parties, including CHP, AKP, MHP, show resistance. They ask what will happen 2.7 km. But none of us are getting an answer from anyone. It is accepted that we show mistakes, but the result is zero. You guys are talking about mythological bridges, but we care more about the bridges of humanity here, please don't forget that. We went to Ankara, we prepared separate projects and took them away, and we determined 8 crossing lines, we even told them the mistakes they made one by one and they accepted, they said yes, we are wrong. We say that if the train passes below, we will create 207 acres of green space, and this is a very serious figure. But the authorities tell us about the right climate, this is not true. ''said.


Indicating that citizens are waiting for an explanation regarding the project, Mayor Bozdoğan said, “We, as the local administration, as the Mayor, want our own views and what should be in our city be heard, rather than pointing out the mistakes. How will they listen to the people who do not listen to us? We were asked to allocate a place, we found every place suitable, we opened every part for use. But while all this is being done, we said, tell us what's going on and what's going on. Because we, the local governments, have to explain this to the public. What I love most about the people of Tarsus is a people who question, not a people who judge. Make sure that our citizens make good inquiries, go anywhere, make good inquiries. But the result is not available at the moment because no one is explaining to us. And what will I tell my people after I do not get a clear result? All we want is to find the right solution for this city.”


President Bozdoğan said, “In another project that was implemented without good planning in the past years, my car was submerged in water, I could not use my car for about 1 year. What does this mean? This is harming the public. Everyone knows how troublesome the underpass was, even the water discharge systems were added later. I have always approached the matter systematically. We held very serious meetings many times for this project, we went to Ankara. We put a lot of effort into the methods we recommend. Projects are opened, discussed, discussed. We went to the necessary places, we do not want this project to be like this, we told us about the damages in this way. We said that if you do it this way, we will have these problems. But we did not rest. But we also need to get an answer from someone. We are ready to compromise on everything, because we love our city and we are in very ancient lands. If the project is not done in accordance with our recommendations, it will cause great problems in our city. In this context, please listen to the ideas of local governments and the public regarding the project, we expect explanations from the necessary people.'' He said.

Speaking on the subject, Environmental Engineer and Project Manager at the relevant Engineering and Consultancy Firm Günal Özenilir said, "Within the scope of the project, it is planned to prevent the city from being divided into two with underpasses and overpasses. Our work is not yet complete. Our work is coming to an end. We are working on the project that will eliminate the division. The answers are slowly starting to form. Thank you for listening to us. '' he said.

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