The scary sub-headline states Istanbul’s history deserves preservation, but at what cost to development?
And while the article does raise some fears that preservation will stop much-needed development, the author's put-away advice is to Visit Constantinople Now.
Many academics have worked to draw up conservation plans for the city. So has UNESCO. But they don’t have the power to enforce them. UNESCO, claiming that the Turkish government has disregarded its reports, has threatened to embarrass Istanbul by putting its cultural treasures on its endangered list. But on the historic peninsula, rates of return on investment in development are among the highest in the world—exceeded only by those in Moscow. For developers, the amount of money at stake is phantasmagoric. They’re willing to spend a lot to make legal and political obstacles go away. Archaeologists can’t compete.
So come visit now, while it’s all still here.
That's www.city-journal.org of course and another example of City Journal slant even from its own authors.
Obviously, as the article states. development has NOT been stopped by preservation, but I wonder the balance? I would bet that development is rarely stopped or even modified -- but then again, that is a somewhat objective question and possible to answer in hard money. The article would be more valuable if some real economic numbers could be applied.
One other factor to consider when development is inevitable: make sure the job is well-done and worthy of visiting by generations hence. The loss is multiplied when a valuable historic structure is lost and what's built in its place is junk, which is often.