The history of formation and physical development of Tehran District 16 goes back to 1920 and the reign of Reza Shah. Thereafter, the activity and residential elements – some of which have greatly influenced the physical development trends of the district - began emerging in the area upon enforcement of industrial and service development policies based on the situation of this district in South Tehran (as well as the southern part of Tehran Bazaar) and its being located near the major roads connecting Tehran to the populated areas in Southern Iran. The following paragraphs discuss these elements and their influence on the physical development of the District during its significant physical development periods.
During the 1920-1941 period, perhaps Tehran Railway Station had the most significant effect on the formation of industrial and service hubs as well as physical development of the District. Construction of this railway station in southern Tehran to the south of the Bazaar led to the establishment - in the northeastern part of the (present) District - of other industrial and service units for responding to the relevant needs in Tehran Bazaar including glass-making factories, Tehran silo, textile factories, Tehran slaughterhouse, flour factory, and a number of storehouses and freight agencies. Other less important elements were the Old Shahr-e Rey Road (current name: Fadayeean Islam) as well as the existing brick-baking kilns (Hajaminolzarb kilns, located in the present slums situated in the depressed lands in southern Shoush area) and other more recent kilns (mostly located to the east of the area’s flat as well as depressed lands) that were constructed to partially meet Tehran urban development requirements.
In the 1942-1962 period, the jobs created by the industrial and service units constructed in the previous period as well as the major industrial and service establishments -including the railway warehouses, the Railway Factory Complex, three customs warehouses (all within the Railway Station premises), the Sugar Transportation Company, the Tobacco Factory, the freight agencies (located to the south of the Bazaar along the Southern Shoush Street) - and the industrial workshops, freight agencies, and warehouses on both sides of Southern Shahid Rajai Street led to the employment and settlement of a large part of the migrant population throughout the District, thus causing further physical development in the area. The Javadieh Neighborhood (in the northwestern part of the District) developed as a working class and immigrant neighborhood after the establishment of the silo, the textile factories, the glass making factories, and the slaughterhouse in Southern Tehran. The 3 million square meter Naziabad lands were partitioned into 2800 pieces (200 to 600 m2) and transferred to the workers and employees of the factories in Southern Tehran including the tobacco factory, the silo, the glass making factories, the sugar transportation company, the slaughterhouse, and the customs warehouses. These were mostly built as residential units between 1952 and 1961. The Chaharsad Dastgah Apartment Complex was also constructed by the government to provide housing for silo employees as well as the employees of the Sugar Transportation Company and the Tobacco Factory. In the meantime, the Aliabad majdoldouleh Neighborhood was being developed for the settlement of the migrant population working at the existing as well as the newly founded industrial and service units, particularly the textile factories, railway facilities, and silo.
The Southern Aliabad and Northern Ahmadabad neighborhoods were developing due to the establishment of the abovementioned factories and workshops as well as the brick-baking kilns (to the southeast) and the warehouses and newly founded factories on both sides of Southern Shahid Rajai Street.
During the 1963-1978 period, the industries and workshops founded in the previous two periods as well as the newly founded industries and service units such as stone cutting factories (to the southwest of Farahabad Junction), Besat Power Plant, the transportation agencies and stone cutting factories to the southeast of the District, Tehran South Bus Terminal, ironmongery agencies along Setareh and Mehabadi streets, and the freight agencies and warehouses to the northeast of the Beq-e Azari Neighborhood as well as northwest of Farahabad Junction were the most important elements in the physical development of the District due to the role they played in creating jobs.
The jobs created due to the increasing activities of the existing industrial and service units (railway plants, South Customs Office, textile factories, the silo), the newly founded industrial and service workshops (Besat Power Plant, stone cutting factories, and freight agencies to the west of Fadayeean Islam Street), the South Bus Terminal, and the freight agencies and warehouses established at the site of the brick-baking kilns in southeastern Tehran led to the physical development of the Khazaneh Neighborhood southwards and the Aliabad Majdoldouleh Neighborhood northwards and the eastwards. In addition, the Southern Aliabad Neighborhood developed for housing the migrant population as well as those who sought jobs and the employees of the mentioned industrial and service units. New industrial and service units were also established to the southwest of the District including ironmongery agencies, flour factories, the Sugar Transportation Company, industrial bread companies, and stone cutting industries. The Hezar Dastgah Apartment/Villa Complex was constructed to house the families of the victims of the 1962 South Tehran Flood as well as the police forces and a number of employees who worked at the industrial and service units in the northern part of the District.
During the 1979-1988 period, industrial and service units did not play a serious role in the physical development of the District due to the following: a general decline in Tehran’s industrial development and growth; location of the District within the urban area and its recognition as District 16 in accordance with the 1979 Act on Urban Division of Tehran (which partitioned Tehran into 20 districts); impositions placed throughout the District on establishment of medium and large industries and service units; and transfer of a number of industries, warehouses, and freight agencies out of the District. During this period, only limited physical development occurred in the District including construction of three small residential townships (Shahid Beheshti, Seyedabad, and Fahimabad) to provide inexpensive housing for the citizens of Tehran in general and the residents of the District in particular.
In the 1989-2002 period, following the limitations imposed on further physical development of Tehran by the government and Tehran Municipality, preventing such development, establishing industrial and service units within urban areas (including District 16), and increased land and real estate prices in the central and northern neighborhoods of Tehran, providing inexpensive housing for citizens acquired a more prominent role in the physical development of the District. A significant part of construction developments at the site of brick-baking kilns and agricultural land in the southern parts of the District is due to this factor, with access networks playing an important role in the location and manner of development of these areas. For example, Shahrak-e Vesal was constructed to provide access to Azadegan Expressway and the network of roads leading to Shahid Rajai and Bahmaniar streets, and Shahrak-e Chahardahmasoum was built by Fadayeean Islam Street.
In addition, the following residential complexes were located and constructed to provide access to the main arterial road in the District so that their residents can more easily commute to and from the important activity centers bohth within and outside the District: Amirkabir University, Kosar, Abrisham, Rey Textile Factory, and the mass housing projects under construction in Eastern Seyedabad.