Istanbul’s planned Çamlıca Mosque will be a “female-friendly mosque,” according to its two female architects, Bahar Mızrak and Hayriye Gül Totu, who have a budget of around 150 million Turkish Liras for the project.
The new mosque, which will be the largest in the history of the Turkish Republic, will use “positive discrimination for women,” said Metin Külünk, the construction engineer and president of the mosque’s foundation.
“There will be a separate place for women to perform ablutions and an elevator to take them to where they can pray. Women will also be able to use a convenient childcare room,” Külünk told Anadolu Agency.
Intended for a 3 hectare area in the Üsküdar district of Istanbul, the Çamlıca Mosque will also include a special area for the disabled, a platform from where visitors can observe prayers, an Islamic art gallery and museum, a library and a car park for 3,500 vehicles. A tunnel will also be constructed between the mosque and the nearest residential area to allow more people to reach it and avoid traffic congestion, according to daily Cumhuriyet. The three-kilometer-long tunnel will connect Çamlıca Hill and Libadiye Crossing, and was discussed in a recent Istanbul Greater Municipality meeting.
The controversial mosque, which is seen as one of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s signature projects, has been widely criticized for its location atop the green Çamlıca Hill and for being an incredibly large project that does not appear to fill a need for locals in the area. The project managers have said they want the mosque to be seen from most parts of the city and also say it will have the highest minaret.