Izmir Historical Coal Gas Factory

Located in the Alsancak district of Izmir on the historic Silk Road, the coal gas factory is a testament to the city’s industrial history, particularly of the late 19th century. It was founded in 1862 and equipped with machinery imported from Glasgow, Scotland. The factory’s large entrance gate even originates from France.

The factory played a crucial role in the industrialisation of Izmir. The gas it produced lit the city’s streets, workplaces and homes and greatly improved urban life. Facilities such as schools, hospitals and gymnasiums were built to promote the welfare of the workers.

When electricity became prevalent in the 1900s, the Coal Gas Factory gradually lost its importance and finally closed its doors in 1955. For many years, the factory buildings lay derelict until the Izmir Municipality restored them in 2009 and turned the site into a cultural centre.

Today, the Havagazı Factory is a lively place with a cafeteria, reading room, exhibition hall and art workshops. In addition, the factory’s iconic chimney has been reinforced and preserved to commemorate Izmir’s industrial heritage.

Why is it regenerative?

The Coal Gas Factory in Izmir’s Alsancak district, situated along the historic Silk Road, exemplifies regenerative tourism due to several key elements. Firstly, it preserves the city’s industrial heritage, showcasing its role in illuminating the city in the late 19th century. Secondly, the factory’s restoration by the Izmir Metropolitan Municipality in 2009 transformed it into a cultural centre, promoting community engagement through amenities like a cafeteria, reading room, exhibition hall, and art workshops. Lastly, efforts to reinforce and preserve the factory’s giant chimney reflect a commitment to conserving historical landmarks.

Project partners met in Aveiro on the 14th and 15th of September 2023. It was the perfect opportunity to visit the destination with regenerative glasses on, to understand its many assets but also some of the challenges the destination is facing. Face to face project meetings always provide the partners with the unique opportunity to learn about the work of the hosting partner and get valuable insights about the destination. In this case partners were hosted by the dedicated team of management and tourism professionals of the University of Aveiro who shared a wealth of insights about a city that was new to many of the participants.

The Enforce project is well on track when it comes to the project work plan, which means that after having completed the Best Practice collection of innovative examples about storytelling for regeneration and also the Storyteller’s Guide, partners used the meeting to discuss the development of the Enforce Training Programme.

For the next few months partners will be working on developing the content in line with guidelines provided by the University of Usak, our project partner from Turkey.
The course should be available for piloting in January/February 2024 and will also be available in the partner languages once all translations are finalised.

The ENFORCE team met in the beautiful city of Luxembourg for its kick-off meeting. It took place at the premises of the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Luxembourg (also known as CCIL), which opened its doors to warmly welcome all partners.

The team was aware of the importance of this first meeting and approached it with the same enthusiasm, as it plays an important role in building strong bonds that will contribute to the success of the entire cooperation. With the common goal of building a solid foundation, the participants discussed in depth the first steps required for the project ENFORCE.

During this visit, the project objectives were discussed in depth to ensure that each partner has a comprehensive understanding of the overarching goals. The outcome of the kick-off meeting was extremely satisfying for all partners and generated enthusiasm among the team. It was a success and left everyone inspired and energised.

The journey of ENFORCE has officially begun and with the collective expertise of the committed partners, there is no doubt that it will thrive and achieve remarkable results.


“The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein”

Project N: 2022-1-LU01-KA220-VET-000089887

© 2024 Enforce Project
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