Information about Büyükçekmece in Istanbul
A Glance Through History
Büyükçekmece, of which the settlement began in 7th century BC, was established by Hellenes. The district was known under the name Athyra when it came under the governance of the Byzantines in 2nd century.
After the dominance of Hellenes, Emperor Attila of the Great Hunnic Empire passed through Çatalca with his army, entered Büyükçekmece and returned to his own lands after imposing a levy on the Byzantines in 447 AD. While the Avar Empire reached İstanbul over Çatalca in 616, Bulgarians did the same in 813 under the command of Khan Krum. In the year 1090, Pechenegs were the ones to arrive at Büyükçekmece.
Turks settled in the Byzantine delta in 1357, however Çekmece region continued to be under the dominance of Byzantines for a long time.
After the conquest of İstanbul, Büyükçekmece came under the governance of the Ottoman Empire and was not settled heavily due to it being a summer resort, agriculture district and the camping territory of the Ottoman armies. Büyükçekmece, which was generally used as hunting grounds and winter quarters during the Ottoman era, was settled by a vast number of Turkish immigrants after the Ottoman-Russian battle in 1929.
Büyükçekmece, which came under the governance of Çatalca region in 1876 became a sub-district of Çatalca after Çatalca became a district in 1926. In 1958, Büyükçekmece became a municipality and was announced to be an independent district after being separated from Çatalca in 1987.
During both Byzantine and Ottoman eras, Büyükçekmece was used as a gateway and accommodation point for armies and travelers. Caravanserais, inns and other historical structures such as the famous bridge by Mimar Sinan, some of which have survived until modern times and some of which have simply ceased to exist with ruins and traces long destroyed are significant symbols that attest to the gateway quality of the area.
Today, Büyükçekmece continues to steadily advance on the road to becoming a world city while preserving its character as a gateway or bridge form past to present at the same time. The historical heritage left to us is being protected harmonically within Kültür Park, which is located on the coast of Büyükçekmece Lake.
The district of Büyükçekmece is located on the coast of Marmara Sea, at the western side of İstanbul. Büyükçekmece, which has a surface area of 18.145 hectares, is surrounded by Çatalca and Arnavutköy districts on the north, Esenyurt district on the east, Beylikdüzü district and Marmara Sea on the south and Silivri district on the west.
The district covers 3,5 % of the surface area of İstanbul. Büyükçekmece is a settlement which is located around the bay of the same name in Marmara Sea, including a lagoon of 29 square-kilometers with the same name and a dam lake.
Besides being one of the important summer resorts of İstanbul with a clean, well-organized coastline of 25 kilometers, Büyükçekmece is also a district of İstanbul that connects the past to the present by preserving the historical heritage at the location. From the viewpoint of urbanism, it is a district deserving to be a world city with its resolved settlement, zoning, infrastructure and environment issues and developing profile.
The surface area of the district is 185.145 square-kilometers and this territory consists of slightly rough terrain and plains. There are no forests within boundaries of the district.
In regard to economic structure, Büyükçekmece is a district that is open to innovations and developments through our belief that modernization has no limits; the district has incorporated important developments in the sectors of trade, industry, and education and is ready for the 21st century. While Büyükçekmece had an economy based on agriculture and fishery before the modernization, it has been developed and revitalized during the last 20 years, especially in the fields of tourism, industry, and education. The television tower which is the 4th biggest in Turkey and 17th biggest in Europe, Tüyap Fair, Convention and Congress Center, Atatürk Culture Center which is one of the most important culture complexes in İstanbul, the stadium with a capacity of 20.000 spectators, five-star hotels and industry and trade organizations have also contributed greatly to the economic structure of the district. Trade is an important area of employment. Most of the district people are employed as blue collar or white collar employees in public and private institutions.
The district is subject to the typical climate characteristics of Marmara region. Since Büyükçekmece is a coastal town, it has a mild and temperate climate.
Through its coastline structured via a modern urbanism approach, select beaches on the coast of Marmara Sea, lake and well-preserved natural habitats, culture and art festivals, hosting of national and international exhibitions, historical buildings the beauty of which is unearthed via restoration and maintenance work and community houses that represent many regions of Turkey with indigenous dishes, Büyükçekmece has become one of the favorite tourism centers of İstanbul.
The district continues to become more and more preferred for daily trips and activities, particularly by visitors in the surrounding districts.
Recently, the city has also become a destination for those who wish to buy a villa in Istanbul, due to low prices easy transportation, available services and the serenity of the area.
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