Follow Us

Meetings / Trainings

Turkish Healthy Cities Association Met in Erzurum


Turkish Healthy Cities Association’s 29th Ordinary Council Meeting and “Physical Activity and Quality of Urban Life” conference were held on April 13-15 and hosted by Erzurum Metropolitan Municipality.

Prof. Dr. Recep Akdag, Deputy Prime Minister; Prof. Dr. Mustafa Ilicali, Member of Parliament from Erzurum; Seyfettin Azizoglu, Governor of Erzurum; Menderes Turel, Chairman of Turkish Healthy Cities Association and Mayor of Antalya Metropolitan Municipality; Mehmet Sekmen Mayor of Erzurum Metropolitan Municipality, Mayors of member municipalities, council members, directors of related institutions and organizations, coordinators of Turkish Healthy Cities Association, experts and press members joined the council meeting and the conference.

A short introduction film about Erzurum was shared with the attendees prior to the opening speeches.

Assoc. Dr. Gul Sayan Atanur, President of the Organizing Committee of the Conference, and President of the Landscape Architecture Department of the Forestry Faculty of Bursa Technical University, and Member of Turkish Healthy Cites Association Advisory Board gave information about the contents of the conference during her opening speech.

In his opening speech, Mehmet Sekmen, Mayor of Erzurum Metropolitan Municipality said that cities mean order, human rights, neighborhood rights and rightful share. Urbanism is a science that deals with the regulation of cities in accordance with certain economic, social and aesthetic plans. Urbanism is not just an architectural activity. Physical planning of cities should be considered together with economic and social needs. “In the last 16 years, a serious awakening has taken place in the field of urban planning in Turkey. We have made significant progress in urbanization and transformation thanks to the investments that have been made in the past 4 years; these investments preserve the historical heritage and identity of Erzurum, which has a deep civilization.” said Mayor Sekmen and added: “According to our understanding based on our history and civilization, urbanism is based on spiritual architecture. Our projects, which have been carried out with great care in order to bring out the history of the city in the land of the Dadaş (traditional name for brave men of Erzurum), reveal the history, civilization and cultural heritage of our city of thousands of years, which remained behind concrete and stones. The essence of our projects which carried out in our ancient city is an Erzurum, changing together with Turkey, with its people, territory, the environment, and the region. With the slogan of “Preserving history, transforming city” we have created exemplary architectural designs and implemented a total of 491 projects costing 2.5 billion in 4 years. Today our city deeply feels the change and transformation, and a part of various urban movements such as developing cities, cultural cities, green cities, healthy cities and sharing cities. On the basis of our service philosophy, there is a new conception of civilization. In this idea, which is not limited to the perspective of a civilization, we are in the effort of synthesizing all the historical and cultural movements by taking Turkey to the center. Our civilization perspective is based on integrating the ancient and the original, the national and the regional, the past and the future with the universal. In Erzurum and in our region, we are signing models and sample projects in order to rebuild the national identity of the cities.”

 Menderes Turel, Chairman of Turkey Healthy Cities Association and Mayor of Antalya Metropolitan Municipality, in his speech before the council meeting, stated that they are gathered in order to carry out 29th stated council meeting and address the issue of “Physical Activity and Urban Quality of Life”, in Erzurum. “The most important mission of Turkey Healthy Cities Association is the healthy development of our cities. Therefore, as long as we can ensure the health of our people, as long as we have healthy people in our cities, we know that it will be easier for our cities to develop healthily,” he said. Mayor Turel, who emphasized the importance of Turkish Healthy Cities Association, continued: “The Association can be considered to be a health project and correct health is present in healthy cities. However, the health of the individuals and the health of the cities are a name that has been given to meet in common point and common ground. We also attach great importance to the development of healthy cities in Turkish Healthy Cities Association. Bicycles are of very important fort his since they are crucial both for personal and urban health. Today, we see that in many modern cities that bicycles are a means of public transport. In other words, public bicycles are being taken with the cards of the users to go from one place to another, and then another bicycle is taken back from there. There are many cities that can be given as an example for this issue, but when we look at Copenhagen, there are 500 thousand people living in the city center, and there are 560 thousand bicycles. As a matter of fact, the bicycle now becomes a public transportation vehicle like a bus, like a rail system. We need to think very seriously the issues that will support the development of the use of bicycles in Turkey”.

Mayor Turel, in his speech, provided information about the activities of Turkish Healthy Cities Association. He expressed that the Association carried out the Urban Health Development Training, which was hosted by Cankaya Municipality, 3rd Environmentally Friendly Facility Awards Ceremony held in Istanbul and Catchment Basin Planning and Management Symposium in Bursa. He also expressed that the Association participated in Mayors Summit, which was held in Copenhagen, Denmark under the leadership of the World Health Organization.

Mayor Turel also congratulated new municipalities that became members of the association. Mayor Turel emphasized that each new member excites the association and the number of member municipalities increased to 71 in the Erzurum meeting, which was previously 70. Mayor Turel further expressed that: “We will consider the membership application of Sirnak Municipality and make a decision during this conference. I would like to welcome them in advance.”

Mayor Turel also thanked Mehmet Sekmen, Mayor of Erzurum Metropolitan Municipality for their hospitality.

Prof. Dr. Mustafa Ilicali, member of parliament from Erzurum, emphasized in his speech the importance of transportation. Prof. Dr. Ilicali said: “I would like to express my gratitude for holding such a meaningful meeting in our city. I had attended a meeting of the Healthy Cities Association before. I delivered a presentation on bicycles. Scientists and members there showed great interest. Transportation, traffic, and air pollution are among the most pressing problems of cities. Many plans and projects are being prepared to solve this problem. Unfortunately, bicycles are not a means of transportation in our country, which makes me sad. Bicycles need to become more popular”.

In his speech Seyfettin Azizoglu, Governor of Erzurum, informed the participants about Erzurum after giving a warm welcome to the guests.

Deputy Prime Minister Prof. Dr. Recep Akdag said in his speech: “Physical activity could be one of the most important factors for our health. When we ask our citizens what is the most important thing in your life, health is always one of the two most important issues. Our citizens also respond to the other as religion. People take religion as a very important factor when they think about life in this world and afterlife. Health is a matter that we all attach importance from birth to death. Therefore, every step to be taken by our municipalities for the healthy life of our people is in fact among priorities of the municipalities, which are institutions closest to the people.” Deputy Prime Minister Akdag continued: “When we describe health, we health professionals, describe it is as a kind of welness in terms of physical, spiritual and social aspects.  Therefore, the Ministry of Health has a multi-sectoral approach and municipalities will play the most significant role in this approach. Therefore, this concept of healthy cities is not only important for a city or for the people of that city, but also for the future of our country.  We all know what the purpose of politics should be in general. This is true both for municipalities and the central government. It is clear that the purpose of politics is to provide peace, welfare, and happiness in the society. The whole thing we are trying to do is essentially based on this”.

After the speeches, the 29th Ordinary Meeting of the Council started.

At the end of the general assembly, the new committee members and planning and budget committee members elected are:

Committee members: Mehmet Sekmen, Mayor of Erzurum Metropolitan Municipality; Ali Orkun Ercengiz, Mayor of Burdur; Salih Kenan Sahin, Mayor of Pendik; Adnan Kosker, Mayor of Gebze; Ufuk Sesli, Mayor of Bayindir, Damla Toprak, Kadikoy Municipality Councilor

Members of Planning and Budget committee: Fahri Yildiz Mayor of Urgup; Guven Yilmaz, Councilor of Yalova Municipality; Fatma Rabia Ay, Councilor of Tepebasi Municipality; Sezgin Yilmaz,  Councilor of Ortahisar Municipality, Huseyin Esen, Councilor of Mudanya Municipality.

At the 29. Ordinary Meeting of the Council, the Association’s 2017 annual report, the 2017 Financial Year-Final Account, Authorization to the President of the Association for the signing of a protocol with institutions and organizations were approved at the council.

The number of the members went up to 71

With the application of Sirnak Municipality, the number of members of the Association increased from 70 to 71. The municipality of Sirnak, with the approval of the council of the Association, has taken its place within the Association, as a new member.

It was also decided that the next council meeting shall be hosted by Kadikoy Municipality.

Three Sessions Took Place in the Conference

Following the assembly meeting, Assoc. Dr. Gul Sayan Atanur’s session was held with the topic “Physical Activity and City”.

The first speaker of the session, Prof. Dr. Handan Turkoglu, made a presentation on “Urban Environment and Walking for Health and Recreation”. Following Turkoglu, Dr. Emine Didem Evci Kiraz delivered a presentation with the title of “Physical Activity and Public Health – Bangkok Declaration”. Finally, Assoc. Dr. Koray Velibeyoglu shared the presentation entitled “Tactical Implementations Supporting Sustainable Urban Mobility in Urban Life Quality” with participants.

At the second session of the meeting was entitled “Bicycle as a Transportation Vehicle” in which Erdogan Saker was the chairman. Firstly, Erzurum Deputy Professor. Dr. Mustafa Ilicali made a presentation entitled “The Place of Bicycle in Urban Transportation”. Following Ilicali, Zehra Turk from the Ministry of Environment and Urbanism made a presentation entitled “Design and Construction Rules of Urban Bicycle Roads”. The last speaker Prof. Dr. Faris Karahan concluded the second session with the presentation “Move Week Activities in Europe and Opportunities for Erzurum”.

Provincial Health Director Dr. Mahmut Ucar was the chairman at the last session of the Conference entitled “Erzurum”. Dr. Ismail Polat, from Erzurum’s Regional Education and Research Hospital, made his presentation on “Health Tourism”. Following Polat, the session ended with the presentation of the Erzurum Metropolitan Municipality’s Deputy General Secretary Selami Keskin, who made a  speach on Erzurum.

Finally, the Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the Conference, Assoc. Dr. Gul Sayan Atanur shared the final declaration with participants.

Erzurum Conference ended with visits to the Double Minaret Madrassah, Erzurum Tabya, Tortum Waterfall and Oski Church.

Bu Haberi Paylaşın