Bursa Metropolitan Municipality Mayor, Alinur Aktaş, who was elected as the person to direct the future targets of Bursa by the votes of the public in 31 March elections, told the readers of Mavi-Yeşil (Blue & Green) about the significant projects, put on the agenda for Bursa as well as the future, intended for Bursa.
The people of Bursa once again handed over the key of the city to you in the new period. What do you think about the decision of the voters in Bursa?
We should respond to the support, given us by this nation by working day and night. We have a long way ahead, our burden is heavy and we have many things to do. We represent a cause. We are the fellow followers of Mr. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Any good actions, we perform will be attributed to our cause. And any bad actions will, nevertheless, be reflected in our cause and the leader. Therefore, no one should doubt that we will try to represent this trust in the best manner and with the best projects and then hand it over one day in proud to our brothers, who will make it much more better than us. I am nothing on my own. No one should doubt that we are going to work in order to establish a city that runs, so to speak, like clockwork in transportation, green areas, town planning, tourism and economy with our council members, mayors, members of the parliament and all ministers, who set their hearts on this country, mainly Dear Mr. Governor, all bureaucrats and directors as well as Provincial Leaders of AK Party (Justice and Development Party) and MHP (Nationalist Movement Party). Our main concern and excitement will be Bursa and the problems of Bursa. We will be hot on Bursa. I sometimes hear from the people around me, they say that ‘I deserved a good holiday’. We are neither available nor have time for this. Now it is time to work. No one should doubt that I will be the Mayor of Bursa in which 2.994,000 people live regardless of who voted for us or not.
What was the biggest problem of Bursa that caught your eyes, when you started to work as the Metropolitan Mayor of Bursa, Can you please explain it with the reasons and how do you plan to overcome such problem?
The primary problem of Bursa is transportation. In Bursa, the central population ow which goes beyond 2 million, where the number of vehicles occupying the streets, increase day by day, we must certainly find a solution for transportation problems. At this point, we immediately put into effect our transportation emergency action plan and turned the cross-roads at 29 points into more swiftly running areas with small touches. With the steps taken up to now, we ensured convenience in the cross-roads by 25%. Our target is to ensure a convenience by 40% when all of the works have been completed. Rail system network will be expanded much more. There is a terminal line still under construction. We are going to integrate this separate line with the current lines. Terminal – City Center rail system line is 8.2 kilometers in length and it has 11 stations. The president gave us a piece of good news and he said that what is required will be done. In addition to this, we will soon have a city hospital with 1355 beds. We will also introduce Bursa with High Speed Train. In consideration of the ending point of High Speed Train in Bursa, we made our plans in order to ensure that our people can access to high speed train completely through rail system. We will integrate the line, which terminates in Emek with the city hospital and High Speed Train by means of an additional 5.5-kilometer line and 4 stations. In addition, we will further extend university line to Görüklü by means of an additional 3-kilometer line and 2 stations. Promised by our President, this 28.8-kilometer line, which will start from Gürsu and that will be completely under the ground will extend to Değirmenönü, Otosansit, Esenevler, Hastane, Mesken, Yeşilyayla, Zafer Plaza, Kültürpark, Acemler and Çalı thereafter. Thus, we will have transferred a significant part of the traffic load in the city center under the ground with this line.
Bursa is a city that is called with its “Green” nature. We know that many projects are ready to carry the city into future in compliance with such title. Can you please talk about these projects and your targets?
With our following target ‘Green Bursa Again’, we will bring in our city 8 big National Garden and Park nearly 1.5 million square meters in the next period. We will build a National Garden, which is as big as 70 football pitch, in Ürünlü, a Thematic and Flower Park in Çeltik, a City Park in Vakıfköy, a Children Village and Park of 200 dunams in Gökdere and a Natural Life And Tourism Centre in Dağyenice. We will also turn Hamitler waste yard, which is located in the middle of 11 quarters, into a giant park and ensure that 300.000 people can breath in and spend good time there.
What is your point of view for renewable sources of energy in the service policy of Bursa Metropolitan Municipality? Do you have any projects to this end?
We generate electricity from the methane phase, emerged in Hamitler Solid Waste Storage Area as part of the project, put into practice in 2012 in order to make use of renewable sources of energy and ensure energy efficiency. Within the scope of the project to generate electricity from methane gas, released from Hamitler Solid Waste Storage Area where 2.850 tons of domestic waste is stored daily and fill rate of which is at the rate of 52%, 9.800 kwh electrical energy is generated as of today in the plant, which was commissioned in 2012. Identical to that of Hamitler another project was also put into practice in Inegöl district. 1.2 megawatt-hour electrical energy is generated from methane gas in this plant. We also brought the mud from the treatment facilities into economy in a sense. We generate daily 2.5 megawatt-hour electrical energy in sludge combustion facilities in which nearly 100 tons of sludge is burned daily. Apart from these, we also started to generate electricity from sun lights by means of 960 solar panels, placed on sports facilities, the roofs of BUSKİ workshops and Görükle G46 depot that belongs to BUSKİ.
In Bursaray, a considerable amount of capacity increase will be provided with signalization optimization investment. What kind of a contribution is expected if we consider the same in terms of energy efficiency?
We still work non-stop for rail system signalization optimization. With this investment, in the amount of nearly TL 120.000.000 million, service waiting periods will be decreased from nearly 4 minutes to 2 minutes. That is to say, our people will have a more comfortable, quality and economic transportation opportunity. Only with this project, the number of passengers, which is daily 287.000, will increase up to 460.000. In other words, nearly 200,000 citizens, who still prefer land transportation, will prefer rail system in urban transportation with this improvement. Once our citizens have preferred public transport, the number of the vehicles in the traffic will decrease on the one hand and the use of fossil fuel will be reduced considerably on the other.
There are major tourism investments among your projects. What projects will be carried out for Bursa in the recent period?
Especially, Tan-pits Area will become one of the favourite places of Bursa in the new period. Here is a centreline of nearly 400-450 dunams when considered from Merinos to Paşa Çiftliği. We are thinking of making an investment in the amount of 1 billion dollars only for the area of 130 dunams, which was evacuated. We will combine this place with Atatürk Congress and Culture Centre. There will be Culture Park straight ahead. We will also evacuate and pedestrianize the immediate vicinity of Historical Bazaar and Public Houses Area. Municipality of Osmangazi is working on Fortress. We will build historical islands in the areas where Military Club, Bey Sarayı, Tophane, Osman Gazi and Orhan Gazi mausoleums are located. It is at that time that someone from Kırşehir will come and spend 3-5 days in Bursa. Of course, while making such a tourism planning, I believe that Bursa doesn’t only consist of Osmangazi, Yıldırım and Nilüfer but we should also include all of our 17 districts in this process.
When considered in terms of general conjuncture, what do you think the role of Bursa will be in the future in its region and throughout the country? Where would you like to see this city as the Metropolitan Mayor of Bursa?
Bursa is one of the locomotive cities of Turkish economy either with its population or export volume. The role of Bursa will also be maintained in the following periods. In addition to this, Bursa will step forward in the following period in space and aviation as well. We are about to complete the construction of Gökmen Space and Aviation Training Centre. The astronauts of Turkey will be trained here thanks to this centre. We continue to put our heart and soul into the target of an eco-friendly and greener Bursa in which tourism revenues increase incrementally and that produce technology.