LASERS IN ENGINEERING, vol.20, pp.225-239, 2010 (SCI-Expanded)
Due to both a rapid urbanization trend since the 1950s and development differences between areas, population and investment have been accumulated in certain regions in Istanbul which has led to disordered, unhealthy and unreliable urban areas. Istanbul is located on a seismic belt and is at risk of substantial damage should an earthquake occur due to irregular urbanization. Several transformation projects have started to be implemented with the intention of improving this fearsome picture and to evaluate the damages that would occur in an earthquake. To achieve this, urban transformation plans and projects must be done taking into consideration historical places, areas at risk and small-scale plans. This study is an evaluation of the development of unplanned housing and urban transformation projects during the urbanization process in the Istanbul Historic Peninsula. The peninsula has been an important cultural and civilization centre between Eastern and Western civilizations for centuries and has been listed in the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage List since 1985. Despite this, no documentation of this important area has yet been carried out. In 2006 the Istanbul Greater Municipality's Directory of the Protection of Historical Environment initiated the "Historic Peninsula Project", which comprises a project area of 1500 ha and approximately 48,000 buildings in crowded and narrow streets. Also, this project included the documentation of all buildings in the area of the Historic Peninsula by terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) in 2006. The most challenging task was to build up a new production environment with modern technology in the very short time frame of two years.