Istanbul Canal Project is a waterway project designed to extend from the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara on the European side of Istanbul. The aim of the project is to relieve the ship traffic in the Bosphorus and to prevent the damage that ships carrying harmful substances can cause to the Bosporus and Istanbul residents. Although similar versions were proposed in the past, the Istanbul Canal Project was announced in 2011 by then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The first tender for the project was held on March 26, 2020.
The increase in economic activities in the world with each passing year has caused the number of ships passing through the Bosphorus to increase in parallel.
The Bosphorus, through which an average of 50 thousand ships pass through each year, is a natural waterway with the narrowest point of 698 meters, and commercial ships pass through the Bosphorus within the scope of the Montreux Straits Convention.
However, in the 1930s when the Montreux Convention was signed, the number of ships passing through the Turkish Straits was around three thousand, while today the increase in ship traffic, the increase in ship size as a result of technological developments, and especially the increase of ship (tanker) transits carrying fuel and other similar dangerous / toxic substances. , the world heritage creates a great pressure and threat on the city and makes it necessary to plan an alternative transit route to the Bosphorus.
It is estimated that the traffic load of the Istanbul Strait, which is around fifty thousand today, will reach 86.000 levels in the 2070s when the developments in the world and the countries in the region are taken into account.
In this context, the aim of Istanbul Canal Project is,
Preserving the historical and cultural texture of the Bosphorus and increasing its security,
In the Bosphorus, primarily reducing the load arising from maritime traffic and increasing the security of the Bosphorus,
Ensuring the traffic safety of the Istanbul Strait,
Ensuring cruise safety,
Creating a new waterway open to international maritime traffic,
Considering a possible earthquake in Istanbul, creating a modern earthquake-resistant residential area based on horizontal architecture.