Project: Conservation of Ayastefanos Church / Social Center of Foreland Arch. Project  | Client: District Governorship of Eğirdir| Site: Eğirdir | Year: 2016 | Status: Concept Project
Project Team: Ali Sinan, Sonat Özcivanoğlu

 YeşilAda whispers a lot to us with historical and geographical value of the city he belongs to. However, it is not possible to say that the current condition is pleasant. In addition to the degeneration of totality f island in large scale, the focal points in a smaller scale has transformed to a undefined and ambiguous position. At that point, we claim that the main reason behind those problems is lack of given care to locality and the interventions made without feeling the spirit of place. The adventure that started with a wish of a small building, gives us the opportunity of reinterpreting the island with a larger scale. The study in which we tried to understand words of the place carried by northeast wind with the smell of the lake offers both re-thinking about the historical site with decisions of larger scale and a new building proposal.

Yeşilada is 3rd Degree Natural Protected Area and has an important value for Eğirdir with 11 cultural assets and 5 registered building in the island. One of those buildings contributing to island identity is Church of Ayastefanos located at the north of the island. The church built in 19th century was used as a frequent destination before arriving to the Jerusalem by pilgrims. It was projected and repaired in 1993. The square where the church is located is known as Monastery Square and in current situation the main road is passing through it. The square is 14 meters in length and 36 meters in width. The buildings belong to new era are located in that part of the island. 

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In the analysis part the site is studied under three temporal part divided according to the data of aerial photos of years 1957, 1975, 1981, 1982 and 2011.

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The Current Problems of the Site:web-0 (3600 x 2530)

On the island scale:
-car park problem due to increase in usage of cars and  traffic problem related with use of various parts of the island with car park purpose.
-the disconnection between the inhabitants and water due to express traffic  between the buildings and the shore
-the disconnectedness of the foreland from the rest of the island
-the deficiency in the usage of the foreland by inhabitants and the visitors of the island

On the site scale:
-The loss of public character of Monastery Square due to new road and express traffic

-The deficiency in the experience of the foreland by the visitors and the inhabitants
-The idle condition of the church and the environment
-The lack of landscape elements promoting the usage of open spaces and park publicly.

Main values of the site
-The traces of the old Monastery Square on the ground in front of the church / historical value
-The convenience of the site to many activities / functionality value
-Public value with park and church on the site
-Social and city memory value
-Visual value with the lake vista
-Being the piece of land in the middle of the Eğirdir Lake

Main potentials of the site
-Being located on a important part of the island (foreland)
-The old plane tree with monumental value and the public space around it
-The existence of the Church of Ayastefanos which has important place on city memory
-The potential of serving as a model for new applications

Main Design Principles

-The project is handled with a integrated approach on the city scale  instead of building scale.  The primary aim was proposing a solution to claimed problems and obtaining a  integrative result with the protection of existing potentials and values. Thus, the project can be evaluated under four main elements:
1st Element is the service core replacing the old school building in idle condition.  It is planned to serve as storage,and  kitchen to church and the activity places which will be created on the project site with the advantege of its location. Moreover, it will provide spaces for restaurant and café.
2nd Element is Church of Ayastefanos which is a Immovable Cultural Wealth. The restoration project prepared in 1993 had already been applied, so in this project the required repair determined as a result of analysis carried out today is offered to take place.
3rd Element is landscape design of the area between the road in front of the church and forehand. The aim is creating a defined public space including the church, old plane tree, service building and foreland.
4th  Element is coastal recreation. The foreland designed in accordance with the proposed integrated pedestrian circulation of the Yeşil Ada,  is defined as the final destination of bicycle route and aims maximazing the usage of the foreland by visitors and inhabitants of the island.
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Design Decisions
In the consideration of analysises and periodic studies, the problems of the Yeşil Ada has revealed with the potentials and values and an integrated design approach is proposed to come to a solution.

A. Island Scale
The proposal on the island scale is giving its  public character back to the Monastery Square.

The loss of public character of Church of Ayastefanos and old plane tree

-The loss of character of Church of Ayastefanos due to main road and high speed traffic
-The loss of regulation encouraging the use of park in foreland

-Making the traces of the old Monastery Square on ground visible again on the street expanding in front of the church

-Bringing the church use value / usage for exhibition purposes with the protection of original use
-Transforming the open space around the old plane tree to a defined public space
-Positioning a service core to the site with the purpose of serving to the church and open public spaces
-Defining the foreland as the end of bicyle route started on Köprü Başı Mevkii , and thereby gaining it a integrated function with the Monastery Square
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B. Building Scale
The proposal is positioning a service core with the purpose of defining and operating  the area lying between the Church of Ayastefanos and the shore as a public space.

The loss of public character of Church of Ayastefanos with new road

-The lack of functionality in the area between the church and shore
-The lack of buildings or business to be a model

-Positioning a building to provide required service to the site
-Defining open spaces to host functions like wedding and celebration. Those spaces will be defined by landscape organization and created courtyard between the new building and the church.
-For the proper use of church as host of offered functions, providing kitchen and storage service on the new building
-Offering restaurant and café facilities on new building
-Defining a courtyard between the church and the new building to provide an open air space sheltered from wind
-Projecting the new building with taking the slope into consideration
-Interpreting the existing slope with public stairs starting from the church to the shore and thereby providing the continuity of circulation on the site
-Using the created public stairs for visual activities and by this way reinforcing the public character of the site
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By taking into consideration the historical value of the Monastery Square and Church of Ayastefanos;
The usage of concrete is avoided in the structural system of the new building and steel structure and masonry wall is preferred.

-Protection of visual unity and perception of the church
-Avoiding the interventions that will put the church risk in terms of statics
-Offering a removable-demountable system are taken into consideration.

With all those mentioned above the existing situation of the church is evaluated and solution of all the problems and transformation of them into potentials is aimed.

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