The Canal Istanbul Project called as “The Crazy Project” was first introduced by the president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in 2011 and the features of the project have been kept secret for some time.
Canal Istanbul is expected to be a waterway that world's biggest vessels would easily pass through Istanbul. Canal Istanbul is known as the largest construction project of the decade in global terms. In addition, the project as one of Turkey's most strategic projects plans to eliminate the increasing risk posed by ships carrying dangerous stuff through the Bosphorus.
Eight years ago, it was planned to build a new waterway in Istanbul with the aim to link the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara that opens to the Aegean Sea. The construction works for Canal Istanbul project is expected to start by the end of 2019, according to media resources, but there is no official confirmation from the state elites.
The 45 km-long canal as an artificial sea-level waterway will be built in Istanbul’s Kucukcekmece-Sazlidere-Durusu region. It is expected to have a capacity of 160 vessel transits a day. In terms of political and strategic significance, Canal Istanbul Project (The Crazy Project) will not be subject to the International Treaty namely Montreux Convention signed in 1936. The total amount of money Canal Istanbul is expected to cost is over $20 billion. It is scheduled for completion in 2023, for the 100th anniversary of the foundation of the Turkish Republic.
Known as the largest construction project of the decade globally, the Canal Istanbul Project has been subject to some critiques too. The people who are against the project belong to opposition party circles and they argue that after expropriation, agricultural land and forests will be destroyed. On the contrary, many state officials and experts argue that, Canal Istanbul with its marinas, coastal structures, container ports and logistics centers is a very important project for the future of Turkey. The Canal Istanbul Project will take its place along with Panama Canal, the Suez and Corinth Canal in Greece. This will contribute the prestige of Turkey in international platform while serving national interests inside as well.
Transport and Infrastructure Minister Adil Karaismailoglu made important statements regarding the Canal Istanbul project, which he described as the only project in the world, not just Turkey.
Adil Karaismailoglu explained that there will be lots of works in 2021 regarding the Canal Istanbul project. Minister Karaismailoglu explained the process as follows:
"Both the traffic in the Bosphorus and the commercial volumes in this world will not remain like this. These will continue to rapidly rise day bay day. At the moment, around 12 billion tons of all cargo is transported by ships. This will increase to 35 billion tons in the next 10 years, we need to prepare for the next 50 - 100 years. As a result of our huge transportation investments, these are all part of the logistics master plan. Canal Istanbul Project is also a master plan for this reason. "
“Ship volumes are quite growing. Transport and Infrastructure Minister Adil Karaismailoglu emphasized, “the density of dozens of ships that want to pass from Yenikapı and the Bosphorus".
"What will happen to the Bosphorus traffic in 10 years?” . Karaismailoglu said, “We have to provide logistics in some way and its best alternative is Canal Istanbul Project.
Pointing out that 2021 will be active for the Canal Istanbul project, Minister Karaismailoglu said, Canal Istanbul is not just a waterway. The settlements which will build around it, holding from the ecological areas to tourism, Canel Istanbul project is not just Turkey's project, in fact, a world project.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s New Statement about the Canal Istanbul
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had new statements regarding the Canal Istanbul project in National Library in the capital Ankara: "We are implementing the work that will establish our own independence, our own sovereignty completely,”. Canal Istanbul project has a 42-43 kilometers long canal. Istanbul will achieve great wealth and the Strait of Istanbul will be ecologically comfortable.
The main purpose of planning and constructing the Canal Istanbul project is to connect the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara. Also, to control the stopping time of ships coming from Marmara and the Black Sea. The construction of the Istanbul Canal will make the Golden Horn part of Turkey a calmer and more comfortable area.