Weather forecasts reported heavy snowfall and blizzards taking over the whole of Turkey starting from Wednesday. Just as the people living in western and central Anatolia heaved a sigh of relief following the snowstorms that took over cities, especially Istanbul, in previous weeks, the state-run General Directorate of Meteorology has announced that a new wave of snowfall is coming and will stay for four days.

The experts especially raised the red flag for Istanbul and the capital city of Ankara. According to the weather forecasts, Istanbul will receive rain mixed with snow while the people of Ankara will wake up to a white day on Wednesday. On Thursday, rainfall will turn into snowfall. It is reported that most parts of Anatolia will be under heavy snowfall on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

The experts predict that the snowfall in Istanbul will last until Sunday while ending in Ankara on Saturday. Earlier this month, experts announced that Istanbul had seen its heaviest snowfall and coldest temperatures since 2009.

Major renovation efforts worth around 10 million Turkish Liras at Istanbul’s historic Topkapı Palace have started, after deep crevices were found in the treasury room of the Ottoman-era palace in July.

The discovery of the crevices prompted the partial closure of the Ottoman-era palace to tourists.

The Culture and Tourism Ministry had noted that serious cracks on the basement floor and static deformations in the treasury walls went “beyond the crack area and reached the discrete and slit levels.” The ministry risk analysis came after parts of a wall in the nearby Gülhane Park collapsed in April, killing two people and injuring five others.

Measurements were made at the foundation of the building and on its walls to determine the cause of the cracks. Efforts for the static strengthening measurements started last week.

The work comes after palace authorities asked for a detailed examination from the Istanbul 4th Protection Committee, which found that the issue stemmed from ground-based problems.

The expert report said the concrete cover used for the mansion’s dome and ceilings between 1940 and 1960 had put excessive weight on the building, which had reached the point of collapse along with seismic activities that periodically occur in the Marmara Sea.

Authorities say that in its current situation, the building would not survive a 5.0-magnitude earthquake and that a rapid intervention is necessary.

It has also been found that the archive and depot sections suffered from similar problems to the treasury, so the renovation team decided to open drilling and inspection holes in order to carry out soil investigation efforts. Officials will determine how to strengthen the ground after investigating why the ground deformations occurred.

The evaluation of instrumental observations and static results in order to strengthen the ground will cover a six month period.

In line with the renovation process, vibrations in the ground via drilling and inspection holes will be recorded at a total of 26 different points. The renovation work is expected to be completed by the end of 2017.

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Avcı said the rumors that the AKM, a contested arts and culture venue located at the heart of Istanbul’s Taksim Square, would be turned into a shopping mall are “not true.”

“There are rumors that the AKM will become a shopping mall. That’s not true. A new opera house will be built there,” he told the state-run Anadolu Agency on Oct. 18, adding that efforts to develop the project have started.

“It is evident in the Istanbul Technical University report [on the building’s structure] that no good will come from it. Even if there was no report, one could see it with the naked eye. The president has already announced it. There should be an opera house that suits Istanbul. We’ve started efforts on that,” Avcı said.

Located in Taksim Square, the AKM has sat unused for the past eight years. The center, which is one of the focal buildings representing republican-era Turkish architecture, has been at the heart of a heated debate since government officials announced intentions to demolish or renew it.

Avcı said there was a “legal stalemate” concerning the building, adding that it was in a “seriously dangerous condition.”

He also complained that it was “not understandable” to perceive the building as symbolic.

“Is the architecture of it an authentic structure? No. It might be understandable due to the events that have taken place there. From time to time there are protests in front of the building, demanding that it be protected. But that is not enough to make such a building a historic symbol,” Avcı added.

istanbul-finance-centerThe groundbreaking ceremony for the Capital Market Board (CMB) and Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) buildings, developed by the Housing Development Administration of Turkey (TOKİ) as a part of the Istanbul International Finance Center (IIFC) in Istanbul’s Ataşehir district and attended by Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım was held on Saturday.

During a speech at the ceremony, Prime Minister Yıldırım said that the world’s hard cash is seeking new addresses, since the U.S. and Europe are pushing international investors more and more in relation to the origin of their property, and that Turkey is the perfect place for investors. Furthermore, he stated that this is the reason why they decided to initiate such a project.

At the IIFC, which is said will turn Istanbul into “a regional and a global financial center,” 50,000 people will be employed and it will have 25,000 daily visitors once opened. The project is aimed at developing the conditions required for Istanbul to rank among the leading financial centers of the world. More precisely, the project aims at developing a legal infrastructure up to international standards, adding to diversity of financial products and services, simplifying and increasing the efficiency of the taxation system, improving the regulatory and supervisory framework, strengthening the physical and technological infrastructure, providing a training infrastructure to meet the requirement for qualified human resources and creating an organizational structure that will realize promotional and monitoring activities worldwide.

Among the joint infrastructure work being launched in the scope of the financial center include an administrative building, a police station, a health center, fire department, continuing education center, various academic courses, a mosque, a nursery, an underground parking lot and a trestle will all be built, bringing together joint infrastructure work in the financial center for financial sector giants like the Capital Market Board (SPK), the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK), Ziraat Bank and Vakıfbank. The infrastructural work also includes environmental planning to be completed in tandem with the finance center by the first quarter of 2019.

euroleague-final-four-basketball-final-sinan-erdem-arena-in-istanbulThe 2017 Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four 2017 will be held in Istanbul in May, the organization announced on Friday.

The venue which will be used for the event remains uncertain, however. Both Sinan Erdem Dome and Ülker Sports Arena are in the frame to host the event. Further details about the event are expected to be revealed by Euroleague CEO Jordi Bertomeu on September 27.

Istanbul had been the host city two times before in 1992 and 2012, when Sinan Erdem Dome was used as host venue.

Galatasaray Odeabank, Fenerbahçe, Anadolu Efes and Darüşşafaka are the four Turkish teams currently competing in the tournament.

vodafone-arena-stadium-in-i%cc%87stanbulIstanbul football fans will now be able to attend away games in derby matches, after a five year break, following the Istanbul Sport Security Committee’s latest decision.

The first derby match to be attended by both sets of fans will be played next Saturday between Galatasaray FC and Beşiktaş in Beşiktaş’s newly built stadium, named the Vodafone Arena in Istanbul.

The ban had been imposed five year ago due to increasing violence between football fans. Thousands of police had to be sent in and around stadiums on derby match days. The Governor enforced a ban on away fans attending derby matches as a means to end the violence.

Debates about lifting the ban had started after the July 15 coup attempt. Authorities argue that lifting the ban is necessary to increase unity after the deadly attempt.

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