DOI: 10.3390/su16010034 ISSN: 2071-1050

A Research to Determine the Perception of the Tangible Cultural Architectural Heritage of Erzurum Castle and Its Surroundings in Turkey

Elif Akpinar Külekçi, Mustafa Özgeriş, Işık Sezen, Ayşe Karahan, Faris Karahan
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Building and Construction

The city center of Erzurum in the east of Turkey, Erzurum province, has structures with origins from the Anatolian Seljuk and Ilkhanid Periods to the present day, including the “Erzurum Castle”, “Ulu Mosque”, “Double Minaret Madrasa”, “Yakutiye Madrasa”, and “Three Kumbets.” It is home to one of the most important cultural heritages of Eastern Anatolia in history and faith tourism. Erzurum can be considered as the cradle of many cultures and civilizations with its deep historical past. Restoration (renovation) works around these monuments, which also contribute to the city’s identity, are important in terms of preserving historical monuments for the future. In this study, the importance of landscape projects and housing restorations in the city and its surroundings, in terms of harmony with the historical environment and monuments and urban identity, was investigated. In the questionnaire prepared for this purpose, we attempted to determine the perceptions of the protection, appreciation, and contribution aspects of the urban renewal works conducted in the tangible architectural heritage areas centered on Erzurum castle. The questionnaires, which included 5-point Likert-type questions, were distributed to 400 people. We sought the opinions of experts in decision-making mechanisms and academicians, as well as local people. As a result of the study, it has been determined that the city is generally not sensitive enough about the protection of historical neighbourhoods and monuments, and urban transformation projects do not contribute to conservation efforts in terms of conservation, sustainability, and visual perception. In addition, in terms of visual perception, it has been revealed that the newly developing regions of the city do not offer housing projects compatible with the historical environment, and that the relevant studies conducted are insufficient. The study also revealed that Erzurum Castle plays a central role in the perception of the historical environment. In terms of sustainability perception, it was determined that architectural restoration and landscape works have positive effects on cultural tourism, urban attractiveness, sense of belonging, quality of life, and prevention of migration. The prepared questions were divided into three groups: conservation sensitivity and perception, visual perception, and sustainability perception.

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