Public Service Areas within the Context of Quality of Urban Life: The Case Of Çankaya Municipality of Ankara

Çiğdem Varol, Aslı Gürel Üçer, İrem Akkaya Özcivelek

Abstract


The interaction between social, physical and economic environment in urban areas defines the quality of urban life. Urban dwellers’ perceived quality of urban life is determined by the degree of satisfaction in their lives andin the society and the environment they live in, as well. The capacity of the city’s public facilitiescontributes to the quality of urban life. If the level of public services such as health, education, security,social and cultural facilities, amenities for individual and familydevelopment, etc.increase in the living environment, quality of urban life will increase also. Depending on this assumption, public service areas can be considered as general determinants of quality of life in neighborhoods. In the literature, the strong relationship between quality of life and public services is emphasized. Not only the level of satisfaction with the services, but also the ability to access the services and benefit from them are required for the quality of urban life. Quality of urban public services will contribute to the overall quality of urban life and the satisfaction with these services will contribute to the overall satisfaction of the inhabitants. The quality of urban life is significantly influenced by the policies of the central and local governments and their implementations. Local authorities have been charged with promoting the well-being of their area. If their policies on urban public services are effective,and if these services are provided with high standards, the quality of urban life will improve in that locality.

 

Within this context, the relationship between public spaces/public services and quality of life in neighborhoods will be evaluated in this study. In order to realize this, spatial measurements of public service areas (primary and secondary schools, healthcare services, libraries, parks, playgrounds, social and recreational facilities, sports facilities, facilities for music, theatre, and art, etc.) considering their amount per inhabitants will be assessed in Çankaya, the biggest district of Ankara. A total of 919.119 people live in 124 neighborhoods in Çankaya district where central governmental bodies and several public institutions, universities, embassies, business areas, trade centers, hotels, culture and art institutions, etc. are located.Thesocial and economic characteristics of the neighborhoods and the public services provided in these neighborhoods differentiate in Çankaya. Thus, spatial measurements of public service areas in the neighborhoods and their evaluations considering the amount per inhabitants will help to explain the current situation of urban public service supply andin addition, the sectoral and spatial conditions of the service areas will guide the policies for the future supply of services to contribute to the quality of life in the neighborhoods.

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