Monday, 28 April 2008

Sulukule Community: Rebabilitation or Relocation

Budd Community,

We have been today introduced to the Sulukule community of space, interest and culture. After this what next?.......................................

In terms of culture, the residents have a sense of realization and desire to live together,while in relation to interest, they have come together for a common course to resist eviction and continue to me protect their space within the city.

In the opening remarks of Prof. Yves Cabannes noted that our group is interested in understanding the struggle of the Sulukule platform and learn how they resist evictions. The food for thought is that "even if we have accumulated principles or knowledge, it will be of no use if it is not going to transform society positively (Cabannes, Y, 2008).

The efforts of the last set of students has been acknowledged by the platform and specific reference was made to the use of children as an important to for their field work. The question for us is whether we are prepared to approach our research through a unique approach or we want to dwell on last year's product...........................what is the challenge

The chair of the Sulukule platform did say that the community have the right to live within their historic location but the Fatih municipality seem to be embarking on a process of gentrification and may not be interested in collaborating with them as demolition of a least 65 property formation has been carried out recently.

Sincerely as development practitioner i wonder what we think about the area we visited today. Diego are the houses healthy for living? Riccardo are the people provided with basic amenities? Elsie, what is the structural strength or durability of building found in this area? Steph do the residents deserve better living conditions................................please lets think about this issues in relation to the submission of Yves Cabannes above.

Technically, are we in support of redevelopment or rehabilitation as appropriate intervention. Maybe a combination of both and other concepts as conservation may be adopted. What i do know is that we are all not in support of forced eviction......................right guys?

The big question at tonight meeting is if our intervention will not trigger emotions and view from the political angle as a disruption within the society as the Sulukule people may have resulted to faith and wait for the aftermath of the bulldozers. I stand to be corrected but i believe we bring the people fresh hope and they will dwell on this. However, remember that the community are already asking us to proffer solution to their inability to finance alternative housing or relocation arrangement by government.

Dear all, on the issue of using from last year, note that the data will by now be out dated and the pieces of information provided by the community platform must be verified as they weren't able to substantiate this to us during our interaction. We as planners studying or carrying out a practical research such as this should by all means take advantage of been present on the field and carry out our own survey and unique investigation. Or how else can we justify of financial commitment towards this trip or put to test what we have learnt over the past few months.

Reconnaissance survey is not just a technical term in planning, we must put this to test. What about our skill on gather data through primary we not need them now. Come on guys, we cannot just depend on secondary information for this study, we need to discover and gather knowledge first hand now that we have the chance.

Have we decided on our study area doing this, please lets consider all we talked about earlier and note that every single contribution counts. This is team work, make it work.

Just imagine..................................................................................................
I may have walked through another path and never have known you guys
That moment that we met I found out that you are all very special to me
You are everywhere in my heart and everything you are is PERFECT!

We will all meet above the top someday, somewhere, sometimes..............


Olajide Abiodun Babatunde, OAB

Conservation in Urban Rehabilitation


Without the fear of contradiction from my earlier communication, I support the principles of conservation particularly with references to cultural heritage which has become vulnerable as they face extinction for several technical, social a political reasons. However, i will like to ask you all to answer the following question:

What will you do in a situation when you are expected to take decisions on a building of the highest cultural heritage which is technically or structural weak leaving millions of people endangered as a result of its existence..........................Preservation and Conservation or demolition?

Please be honest, practical and sensitive in sending me your view as a major body of knowledge in today's context of best principles and UNESCO ideals.

In planning school, we acquired knowledge on the principles of Urban Renewal which dwells on the concepts of Rehabilitation, Redevelopment, Conservation, Preservation, integration, etc. We must as development practitioners understand all these concepts and use them interchangeably in designing our intervention in a context specific situation.

The issue of funding, relocation, compensation, etc have always made redevelopment very unpopular and Rehabilitation which incorporated other concepts as conservation is too useful to be ignored in practice.

Have a nice day.

Olajide Abiodun Babatunde

Community Participation in Urban Rehabilitation

Budd Community,

How are you doing today.

Community as we know is very difficult to define as they are very complex and multi dimensional in nature. According to one author, we may not even know all the communities we belong to as communities interwoven and cross sectional within a defined area and beyond.

I will like to know if you have recently discovered the new community "Sulukule Platform" which we now belong to.

Whenever people, professionals, political leaders, etc identify with a particular course, then community is formed. As we know from our days in the DPU, we have different types of communities which include communities of culture, communities of interest, communities of place, communities of religion, etc.

The organization of communities can be very vital to the implementation of any project and the investigation of all spheres of a community is recommended for a people involved, bottom-up and participatory approach which we intend to explore within our study area.

We must thank the group on community for the detailed SWOT analysis and Timeline below as an addition to our Knowledge and basic tool for engaging this unique community:

Community must be viewed as multicultural and not mono-cultural in nature (Cabannes, E, 2008).

In your own understanding what is Community?


Stakeholders in Urban Rehabilitation

Dear All,

The pulling together of resources in project design and implementation is very fashionable and has been proven to be effective.

If the intervention will succeed, then all hand must be on deck as ‘people can only become genuinely committed to projects and programmes which are derived from their needs, which advance their interest, which take into consideration their capacities, limitations and constraints and which incorporate their participation in problem definition, project determination and design in choice of modalities or strategies of programme implementation and in the evaluation of the past and present effort’, (Taiwo, D.O, 1995). At this junction, I am bold to suggest that Taiwo’s submission above should be considered by very development practitioner as one of the basic rules of engagement in designing of intervention in the context of Urban Rehabilitation Project.

Understanding the SWOT analysis of stakeholders and actors that we will be dealing with is too important to our study and the identification and pulling together of these resources (stakeholders) must be done now to form the effective partnerships required.

I rest my case.....................


Policies and Laws in Urban Rehabilitation

Dear Buddies,

The importance of laws and policies in the implementation of urban rehabilitation projects can never be over emphasized. Also, the adoption of conservation strategies for Historic Districts within any city which depend on the ability of the government and/or administration to adopt certain local and international principles (e.g UNESCO) cannot be ignored in understanding the strengths and weakness of our task.

Remember to retrieve necessary documentation from the group on laws/policies and digest the contents in relation to the workability of our acquired technical knowledge in a context specific intervention we are now faced with.

We must not design in isolation because it is only "where there are no laws that there are no procedures".

Therefore, as part of the rules of engagement, we must have a fair knowledge of the laws/policies that exist within our study area.

Ask questions on deficient laws and make proposals or find alternative approaches within the existing laws as the case may be. This I believe is the cross of a development practitioner, we must carry it.................................hard luck guys.

Good morning.