Gungoren Istanbul

Güngören is a small industrial and working class residential district of Istanbul, near Bakırköy.


Güngören is hard to distinguish from its neighbouring districts in the industrial wasteland north of the E5 highway, districts such as Merter or the poorer parts of Bahçelievler. Like them it has seen a rapid and uncontrolled influx of migrants from Anatolia since the 1950s. In 1955 this was an open space with a small village on it,named 'Vidos'. Then a main road out of the city to the west was put through here and people began to build houses near the road. Most were built illegally. Today there are 237,000 crammed into a tight mass of cheap apartment blocks.

Güngören today

The housing districts of Güngören are slightly older and better established than other districts of 1980's migrants to the city, such as Esenler or Bagcilar, but still comprised of narrow streets lined with six or seven-storey apartment buildings with no space between them. The difference is that the buildings are slightly better-maintained and there are more shops in the streets. But still standards of living are low.

Other parts of Güngören are faceless, nameless poorly-lit muddy roads lined with factories. Crime is a problem. Certainly the industrial estates are not welcoming after dark.

Lately, the municipality has started to improve the infrastructure, and has extended the tram from Zeytinburnu to improve the transportation in and out of the district.