Adaptive Re-use of Medieval Caravanserais in Central Anatolia
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Kayseri, located at the junction of two major trade routes from northeast to southwest and from southeast to northwest, has been a commercial center for at least 4,000 years. The 23,500 tablets found at the Assyrian trade colony in Kanesh-Karum dating around 2,000 BCE and located 20km from the modern city provide ample proof. The great number and relevant size of Medieval caravanserais around the city as well as commercial buildings at the center indicate that this importance continued. Some of these caravanserais are already in use, albeit with inadequate architectural preservation measures while others are abandoned and/or partially destroyed. Indeed, the preservation, restoration and adaptive re-use of Medieval buildings is a major problematic, bringing out issues and interventions related to lacunae and reintegration, liberation or clearance of additions, structural strengthening with traditional/contemporary technologies, partial reconstruction, consolidation, cleaning and conservation of original building materials, and preventive maintenance. This paper aims to consider the possible presentation and adaptive re-use of Seljukid caravanserais over and inventory of accessible and at least partially preserved examples, focusing on eight case studies from the late 12th and 13th centuries: Karatay Han (1240), Tuzhisar Sultan Han (1232-1236), Eshab-i Kehf Han (before 1235), Cirgalan Han, Saruhan, Agzikarahan (1231-1240), Alayhan and Oresin Han.