Göztepe Train Station

Our rail system is not as sophisticated as Britain, nowhere close actually, or even India (mind you the Brits built everything) but we cherish what we have which is very small. I have always loved train and the unique atmosphere it creates around you. The sound of the rails, people getting on and off and of course the train stations with each of them having her wondrous characters. There is always a sadness in them because of departures maybe and of course happiness because of arrivals. Bearing both sides of the story depending on your mood. But my story is a sad one.

Unfortunately we as Turks all through history have loved to conquer and destroy.

No I am not bad mouthing us but we need to be clear on certain circumstances. This is Istanbul Story after all and its personal isn’t it! We don’t like preserving old buildings, history, culture and whatsoever. We like to demolish and built new stuff. Especially buildings with stories, histories and culture. No we like to demolish them and built new ones. I have very rarely seen the opposite where we preserve the old in the hope of passing it on to the next generation. Perpetuating the memories and sustaining the responsibility.

I have lived on the Asian side most of my life and have used the train system for as long as I can recall. Unfortunately with the closure of Haydarpaşa (the main train station on the Asian side) and the renewing of the old railway system, all trains are on hold until further notice. The closest train station that works is Pendik which is on the outskirts of İstanbul (Asian side). Anyway lets come to my story. It’s about Göztepe Train Station that I have used most of my life. With the renewing system its closed down for the last two years now. The existing station was built in 1915 along the railway between the 91 kilometres long Haydarpaşa-Pendik that was originally constructed in 1871. We should have been celebration the 100th anniversary of the building this year but unfortunately due to all the endless efforts of communities we heard that it’s going to be demolished. Yet another unique piece of history will be rammed down into the abyss of destructiveness. All the responsible communities came down to one suggestion; to convert this lovely building into a museum. A train museum and hence prolong the life of the building into future generations. This was rejected by the authorities. Of course there is a purpose like everywhere else, the loquacity, the rant etc.

But just stop for a moment this station which is also a tunnel is a unique piece of architecture that represents a certain timeline of our history of our Istanbul. Millions are paid to renew the railway system hence an extra can be paid to preserve this building. But no! My heart aches as we the people cannot do anything about it. We tried believe me we tried…

So I leave you with the photo that I took a couple of years back. It was a snowy day where we tied this moment to eternity never nothing what the future paved for us…

P.S. the D (demolish) Day is not set yet. So if you by any chance are here, go have a look and cherish this beauty…

Göztepe Train Station Sign Waiting for its fate
Göztepe Train Station Sign Waiting for its fate