Taksim Square is the heart of modern Istanbul. The Republic Monument on the Square was built in 1928 to commemorate the formation of the Turkish Republic. It also functions as a transportation hub for Istanbul, with buses and dolmuses (shared taxis) and its own metro line departing often to destinations around the city. Around the outside of Taksim Square are also the Ataturk Cultural Centre and the rather imposing Marmara Istanbul Hotel.
Istiklal Street begins at Taksim Square and ends at Tunel.