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Athens is a city of 3.2 million inhabitants located in the central plain of the Attica Periphery (administrative region). It is one of the world’s oldest cities and is the largest city in Greece and fourth most populous capital city in the European Union. It is challenging to meet mobility demands and protecting built heritage...

At present, the city of Athens has no specific data on modal split. However, the majority of citizens use public transport.

Over the last decade the metropolitan area has undergone tremendous development, especially prior to the Olympic Games of 2004. For that event, great efforts were made to restructure and reshape the city so that it would operate more efficiently. As many as 60 major urban and architectural projects were launched that intended to solve traffic and environmental problems, improve the quality of life and achieve sustainability. Among these were a new metro and tramway network, motorway construction, the establishment of a network of footpaths to create a “cultural” itinerary in the heart of the city, and the innovative use of space at the architectural or urban scale.

The major hurdle from the beginning was not financial but rather organizational: it was very difficult to co-ordinate the necessary activities among the institutions involved.

For the future, Athens, seeks to strengthen its position and image in the Mediterranean and within Europe, and therefore will continue to beautify and improve the functionality of urban systems and infrastructure.

Partnerships have been key in the work accomplished to date. For transport projects (e.g., metro, trams and the airport) the city worked with the Ministry of Transport, the Olympic Games Organising Committee, the ad hoc Olympic Games Secretariat of the Ministry of Culture, and the Secretariat of Public Works Ministry of the Environment Planning and Public Works (YPEHODE).

Summary finalized: July 2010


Eugenia Konaxi
The Head of Sustainable Mobility Department