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WAC's documentary explores METU and ITU campuses that represent innovative solutions

Turkey Architecture News - Jun 26, 2020 - 10:20   1012 views

WAC's documentary explores METU and ITU campuses that represent innovative solutions

World Architecture Community has released its ninth exclusive documentary exploring the masterplans of the Middle East Technical University (METU) in Ankara and the Istanbul Technical University (ITU) in Istanbul, as part of WAC's exclusive Life & Architecture series which was announced on April 23, 2020.

METU, founded in 1956, was designed by the late Turkish architect Behruz Çinici. Located in Ankara, METU's campus, used by the university since 1963, is the first serious implementation of the campus concept in Turkey. Meanwhile, having its official language of instruction in English, the university is named among the top world universities. WAC's new documentary explores the design of masterplan of METU university campus. 

ITU, located in Istanbul, was established in 1773 and received its formal recognition as an institution in 1928. ITU is the world's third-oldest technical university dedicated to engineering sciences, as well as social sciences. In this new episode, the documentary elaborates the transformation of the Ayazağa Campus, the main campus located in the Maslak area, between 1996-2000. ITU has four more campuses: Taşkışla Campus, Maçka Campus, Gümüşsuyu Campus, Tuzla Campus. 

WAC has launched Life & Architecture documentary series to give a detailed and in-depth look at many key buildings of contemporary architecture. The exclusive documentaries, captured from the 1990s, present an outstanding virtual journey throughout the buildings. 

Each documentary or episode features the buildings' distinctive features and the design stories of such important commissions narrated with exclusive interviews with architects, commissioners of the projects and project leaders. 

As the documentaries had been recorded for a Turkish television in 1990s, all the videos are presented in Turkish language but featuring English subtitles. However, the series are not outdated, on the contrary, these documentaries have a very high archive value to recapture the essence of the buildings. 

In this episode, you'll be presented the Middle-East Technical University (Ankara) and Istanbul Technical University campuses, which represent innovative solutions from a social integration perspective for their time.

In a 20-minute documentary, there are exclusive interviews with the late Behruz Çinici, the architect of METU university campus, the late Mustafa Kemal Kurdaş, former Rector of METU and Gülsün Sağlamer, former Rector of ITU. 

METU was awarded the international Aga Khan Award for Architecture in 1995 for its forestation program. The campus is specifically important with its integral design approach with landscape and exposed concrete buildings at the campus. Its campus concept presents extraordinary spaces with courtyards, inner gardens created inside the buildings and exposed concrete as the main materials and cassette system applied to span the large spaces which almost resemble an architectural laboratory.

The campus also pioneered improvement of qualified workmanship and experiment with new materials during construction. An important part of the masterplan is its infrastructure. Infrastructure, with all the facilities like heating, air-conditioning, water, sewage, were located underground for the first time in Turkey.

ITU's Ayazağa Campus was started construction in 1973. The campus plan was headed by Professor Kemal Ahmet Aru. In 1996, the Ayazağa Campus was transformed with the idea of a pluralistic urban university which was followed by a pluralistic and responsive campus.

WAC releases a new documentary each week on Fridays. WAC's new documentary will be posted on Friday, July 3, 2020 on the website and on WAC's Vimeo page.

WAC's ninth documentary: METU University Campus (Ankara), ITU University Campus (Istanbul)

WAC Life & Architecture credits:
Presenter: Özlem Gürses, Editor
Technical Director: Andreas Treske

Stay tuned for a new documentary!

Image © WAC