The METU NCC campus is beautifully located on a hill overlooking Morfou Bay on the north coast of Cyprus. Below the Campus lies the fertile citrus-growing lands around the town of Guzelyurt (Morfou) stretching across the Green Line to the high Troodos mountains.
The METU Northern Cyprus Campus is of a bold and radical design. Sitting atop a sandstone scarp extending westwards from the village of Kalkanlı, there are extensive southerly views across the citrus covered valley towards the Troodos mountains. The ever-changing colours of the Troodos, snow capped in winter, provide a dramatic backdrop to the deep-green orchards of orange, grapefruit and lemon which fan across the plain below the university campus.
Amongst the green orchards – still green even in the height of summer when the wheat fields are scorched yellow – lies the local administrative town of Güzelyurt, five kilometres from campus. Güzelyurt (Morfou) provides almost all the day to day needs of campus residents and is also the local transport hub for Lefkoşa (Nicosia), Lefke and Girne (Kyrenia).
Looking out to the west, the campus finger points out over Morfou Bay, the sandy seashore a mere four miles from campus. Descending through garigue and maquis hillsides of pines, carob, juniper and oak, tracks to the seashore wind through olive grove (some, over five hundred years old), wheat fields, and grazing sheep and goats. Spring fills the area with numerous orchids, wild flowers, sedges and other grasses.
Immediately north of the campus stretching to Cape Korkamitis is the newly-designated Natura 2000 special area of nature protection. To the north and east the hilly garigue and maquis landscape makes up the foreground, through which the road to the north coast and Kyrenia winds, to the jagged limestone and chalk ridge called the “five-finger mountains” Beşparmak Mountains (Pentadaktylos) and which separates the north coast of the island from the central plain
Construction of the campus began in 2004 with the latest academic building completed in 2010. The campus layout is zoned according to broad function so that accommodation tends to be grouped together, academic blocs are grouped together, administrative buildings are grouped together, and shopping and social facilities are grouped together. Crossing the entire campus by foot takes a little over ten minutes, with most buildings being less than five minutes away from each other.
The bold architecture and careful landscaping make METU NCC a beautiful and tranquil environment within which to work. Tree-lined roads meet areas of lawn, fountains give movement to angular installation, relaxing shade gives way to open plazas. Although built along the flat top of a hill the campus is easy and pleasant to walk, traversed only by few vehicles. Residential areas merge unnoticed with administrative and commercial zones, and student accommodation is located no more than three minutes walk from teaching buildings and the Library. In addition to the modern, often striking and certainly distinctive architecture of the buildings, the landscaping of the campus offers a peaceful, unhurried and relaxed environment within which to engage in study and scholarship. Great care and attention has been taken in keeping the grounds green and fresh within the constraints of water-stressed environment.
As a new campus, METU NCC benefits from a number of impressive educational and social facilities. Prime amongst these must be the Cultural and Convention Centre which is a striking glass, marble and steel building which houses four state-of-the-art amphitheatre (each with 550, 220, 110 and 110 seats), eight seminar rooms and an impressive lobby which gives views over Morfou Bay. With a total of 5200 square meters of meeting space, METU NCC Culture and Convention Center is a pre-eminent setting for any event – seminars, conferences, exhibitions, cinema, theatre, recitals – and which we therefore encourage academic staff to use as an international venue.
Extensive teaching buildings have been built complete with adjacent faculty staff offices. Lecture theatres and seminar rooms include whiteboard and data-projection and audio-visual facilities an impressive new Engineering Laboratory building now faces the teaching facilities.
As part of a new campus the Library is housed in a marvellous and spacious building, and is developing into a major venue of learning and scholarship through the efforts of its dedicated team of librarians. Extensive electronic and online collections are available and an active programme of development and expansion of the Library’s teaching and research collections is underway.
Next door to the Library one can find the Computing and IT Building which is not only the electronic nerve centre of the campus, but also houses the IT support team and provides a large number of computing suites for student and teaching use.
Since its inception METU NCC has had a fully operating Guest House with 34 ensuite rooms with two twin beds in each room. The 24-hour reception, modest daily rates and easy access to all campus facilities make the Guest House a fine service for the campus. Thus there are high-quality accommodation facilities on or near campus for visitors whether they be conference guests, parents of registered students, alumni or visiting family and friends.
METU NCC works to promote and advance healthy lifestyle choices through participation opportunities, educational experiences and supportive services. Our mission is to provide a broad spectrum of quality sport, recreation, leisure programs and services to the diverse METU NCC community, including graduate students; to encourage the lifelong pursuit of active, healthy lifestyles and to enhance personal development through participation, employment, and leadership opportunities. To that end METU NCC has invested heavily in a range of sports facilities centred on the imposing Sports Centre, together with tennis courts, football pitches, and outdoor swimming pools.
A central area of the campus contains a number of retail shops, bank, travel agent, a cafe and a restaurant thereby catering to most immediate day-to-day needs. Buses, taxis and shared taxis (dolmuş) arrive and depart adjacent to the commercial area. Security staff inconspicuously ensure safety on campus twenty four hours a day throughout the year, and also provide security at the main and secondary campus entrances.
The campus is located on the edge of the village of Kalkanlı, which in turn is a satellite of the local administrative and commercial town of Güzelyurt. Travel time by vehicle from campus to Güzelyurt is seven minutes, to Girne is forty-five minutes and the journey to Lefkoşa is thirty minutes. Travelling to Ercan airport, from which international connecting flights can be made, takes about forty-five minutes. There are regular and frequent flights with four different airlines to many destinations in Turkey.