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Turkey´s Abant Natural Park to be vehicle free
1.       si++
3785 posts
 15 Apr 2011 Fri 10:53 am

Turkey´s Abant Natural Park to be vehicle free


AA photo

AA photo

Abant Natural Park in northwestern Turkey will only be opened to pedestrians following the decision of the Sakarya Regional Administrative Court to hand over the management of the Abant Natural Park to the Ministry of Environment and Forestry.

The park had formerly been under the management of the Bolu provincial administration whom critics accused of mishandling the park to the detriment of the environment and wildlife in the region.

Under the new ownership the park is closed to buses, while in the long run, a complete ban on vehicular traffic is planned.

“Some 10,000 visitors come to Abant on the weekends. Our true goal is to completely seal off the lake region from vehicles,” said Sezgin Akay, the Bolu Provincial Director of Environment and Forests.  

The Abant Natural Park had been under the management of the Bolu provincial administration since 2009. Some of the controversial schemes developed by the administration included the expansion of existing roads, the raising of water levels in Lake Abant, and the creation of an artificial lake called “Little Abant.”

Following a host of negative reactions, three lawsuits were filed against the provincial administration demanding the handing over of the management of the park to the ministry. Of these, the case opened by the Bolu Chamber of Urban Planners was resolved on the Jan. 22, and as a result the ministry took over the management of the park.

“A year has passed and the damage is done. Nevertheless, I still think that future activities in the area will have to abide by the jurisprudence [relevant to this case]. The first thing that needs to be done is to completely seal off Abant from vehicular traffic,” said Professor Mehmet Tuncer, the head of the Conservationists Association, or KORDER, who stated that the decision for the transfer of power had come too late.

 

Source: here

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